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Natural Awakenings Sarasota / Manatee / Charlotte

41 People Have Vision Restored Thanks to Free Cataract Surgery by Center For Sight

May 24, 2012 04:55PM

Center For Sight performed 41 free cataract surgeries for people who have no insurance and no means to pay on Friday, March 23, 2012, at its state-of-the-art surgical center in Sarasota. Center For Sight will perform dozens more free surgeries, all as part of Mission Cataract USA, a nationwide project involving eye surgeons throughout the United States. Most patients were from Sarasota, Manatee, Charlotte, Pinellas and Hillsborough counties, with a few traveling from as far away as Alabama and Georgia. The surgeries were performed by Dr. David Shoemaker, Dr. William Lahners, Dr. Joshua Kim and Dr. William Soscia, and supported by a team of Center For Sight nurse anesthetists, medical technicians, nurses and administrative staff, all of whom donate their services for the day.

“It’s a privilege to be in a position to help people who are facing completely preventable blindness,” said Dr. David Shoemaker, Founder and Director of Cataract and Lens Replacement Surgery at Center For Sight.

Brian Penambere, a 51-year-old truck driver from Bradenton, is one such patient. “I hadn’t seen a doctor in years,” he said. “About three weeks ago, my depth perception was so bad I was stumbling around, knocking things over. I recently lost my job and my insurance, so I’m extremely grateful for their help.”

To ensure ongoing funding of its charitable efforts, Center For Sight recently formed Center For Sight Foundation, a donor-advised fund of Gulf Coast Community Foundation. Its mission is to provide world-class surgical care to prevent avoidable blindness in patients who cannot afford treatment.

Center For Sight has eight offices serving Manatee, Sarasota and Charlotte counties. For more information, visit

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