Michael Rogelstad, an Ophthalmologist (eye specialist) visits Marathon an average of twice a month to provide his services. He has been flying to Marathon for 16 years. A physician referral is necessary to get an appointment with Dr. Rogelstad.
Cataract Surgeries are a new addition to the services offered at Wilson Memorial General Hospital. Dr. Rogelstad has implemented new technologies and procedures that have reduced the time it takes to complete cataract surgery, including more efficient patient flow, and a reduction of duplicated supplies, such as streamlined sterile packs at the surgical site. And, in a partnership with multinational company Bausch & Lomb, WMGH provides the top of the line lens for cataract surgery- at no extra cost to consumers.
For more information, please contact the reception desk at WMGH at (807)229-1740, extension 0.
Implementing State of the Art Cataract Surgery: Partnerships for Change
Planning and delivering health services in rural and sparsely populated areas is a significant challenge, and patients may have limited access to the services they need. Eye clinic patients in Marathon, Ontario had to travel at least 4 hours for cataract surgery. Wilson Memorial General Hospital (WMGH) decided to improve patient access by offering cataract surgery in Marathon, but WMGH had no equipment or trained staff to deliver the service.
The hospital accessed the necessary expertise by partnering with Strathroy and Middlesex General Hospital (SMGH), an institution that had recently updated their eye program to increase efficiency, service and quality. The partnership began with the ophthalmologist, who provided eye clinic services in Marathon and performed cataract surgery in Strathroy. At WMGH, the nurses, physicians, board of directors and CEO all supported the change, as did the CEO of the North West Local Health Integration Network (LHIN). SMGH partners included the eye program staff, the hospital CEO, and the CEO of the South West LHIN. The partnership allowed WMGH to observe and train in a state-of-the art program, access the expertise of a technology partner, Bausch & Lomb, and develop their own program using the most advanced technologies and efficient processes.
These important partnerships allowed rapid program development, and the first procedures were performed at WMGH only 18 months after the decision was made to offer cataract surgery. Openness to change, innovation, resourcefulness and collegial partnerships were all critical to successfully developing and implementing the new eye program.
Janet Gobeil, RN
Chief Nursing Officer
Wilson Memorial General Hospital