CONTACT: TOM MOORE
8788 John Pappajohn Pavilion
Iowa City IA 52242
Release: March 24, 2000
UI department of ophthalmology celebrates 75 years of patient care, research
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- As part of its 75th anniversary celebration, the University
of Iowa department of ophthalmology and visual sciences, in cooperation with
the Iowa City Area Science Center, will host the National Eye Institute (NEI)
exhibit, "Vision." The free public exhibit will be displayed at
the Old Capitol Town Center April 2 through June 25 during regular mall hours.
"Vision" is a 2,000-square-foot interactive science exhibit, appealing
to audiences of all ages. Developed by leading vision scientists to honor
the NEI on its 25th anniversary, the exhibit highlights the accomplishments
of vision research and explores the translation of pioneering research into
the treatment of disease. NEI supports more than 75 percent of the vision
research in the United States, including research conducted at the UI.
"We are proud to be able to host a nationally-renowned exhibit in commemoration
of the 75th anniversary of the UI department of ophthalmology and visual sciences,"
said Thomas Weingeist, M.D., professor and head of the department. "
'Vision' provides a terrific opportunity for the public to become more educated
about advances in research and treatment of eye diseases, fields in which
the University of Iowa has been a leader since the inception of the department."
Visitors to the exhibit will learn how recent discoveries have unlocked
some of the mysteries of sight through models and diagrams that show how the
human eye receives light images and transmits them to the brain, where we
"see" color, motion, form and depth. Visitors also will learn how
researchers are developing ways to protect our sight from visual disorders
Over the past 75 years, the UI department of ophthalmology and visual sciences
has built a tradition of excellence in patient care. Today, a renowned faculty,
modern facilities and highly skilled nurses and technicians are specially
trained to meet the needs of people needing eye care. More than 65,000 patients
are treated within the department annually. For six consecutive years, U.S.
News & World Report has recognized the department among the nation's top
The UI department of ophthalmology and visual sciences has 15 residents
in training who spend three years learning about diseases and surgery of the
eye. After residency training, 10 to 12 ophthalmologists spend additional
time training in one of several subspecialty areas.
Research maintains a strong presence in the department, resulting in the
latest treatment and technology for patients. Currently, research is being
conducted in areas such as macular degeneration, glaucoma and eye cancer,
vision screenings for infants, and molecular research of hereditary eye diseases.
Employees of the Iowa City Area Science Center will staff the "Vision"
exhibit and will provide tours to school groups. The science center is a nonprofit
corporation established for the purpose of creating a permanent science and
technology center in the Iowa City area.
University of Iowa Health Care describes the partnership between the
UI College of Medicine and the UI Hospitals and Clinics and the patient care,
medical education and research programs and services they provide.