How ARC is Using New Eye Screening Technology to Prevent Blindness Disease
ARC CEO Dr. Anas Daghestani Discusses the New Prevention Tool with Local News KXAN-TV
October 18, 2016
Less than half of diabetic adults do not get their annual eye screening, putting them at risk for diabetic retinopathy, one of the leading causes of blindness in the U.S.
ARC knew it could do better. That is why we brought the screening technology to our patients.
In just nine months, the results have been outstanding.
Learn about how ARC helped a young website developer and music hobbyist save his vision on KXAN-TV.
Using Technology to Improve Access
“In the course of diabetes, you really just need to keep up with staying active, keep up with your doctor appointments,” explained Dr. Anas Daghestani, ARC CEO and Medical Director of Population Health & Clinical Quality. “But later in the disease you have to worry about your eyes, you have to worry about your kidneys, about your heart – so it can get overwhelming between all the doctor’s appointments.”
He also said that because diabetic retinopathy carries few symptoms, many are unaware they have the disease until it’s too late to treat.
That is why ARC decided to bring the screening to patients by embedding IRIS® eye screening technology at three clinics in 2015. The specialized cameras take precise images of the retina and send them seamlessly and securely to local retina specialists to review. If a test comes back abnormal, the patient is recommend to follow up with an ophthalmologist.
The results were excellent — more people were getting screened and early stages of the eye disease were being detected. ARC has since added the technology at three more clinics with plans to add more.
From the Eyes of a Patient
When Demetrius Kellum lost his wife unexpectedly in 2014, his health also took a tumble. At a regular visit with his family medicine physician, Dr. Vanessa Ven Huizen, she suggested getting an eye screening on the way out. He did...and his eyesight was likely saved because of it.
Demetrius was diagnosed with non-proliferative diabetic retinopathy, an early stage of the disease and was immediately referred to a retinal specialist at Austin Retina Associates . After three months of eye injections, today are almost no traces of the disease. Read more about Demetrius’ story.
Said Demetrius in an interview with KXAN, “My eyesight, it’s a lot better. I’m glad I have it. I couldn’t do my daily job and I couldn’t do my hobby at all.”
Learn more about the new eye screening technology at Austin Regional Clinic.