Highlights and Future Projects: 2015-2017
The Jorge N. Buxton Microsurgical Education Foundation at New York Eye and Ear of Mount Sinai (NYEE) is committed to advancing microsurgical techniques and fostering a culture of experimentation, innovation, and excellence in all aspects of microsurgical instruction. We aim to improve access and standard of care around the world by investing in education, technology, and healthcare missions to areas in need of quality eye care.
The Foundation President, Douglas F. Buxton, M.D., received the Margaret Loeb Kempner Humanitarian Award on November 5, 2015 commemorating his steadfast dedication to microsurgical education and philanthropic service over the past 20 years at the Infirmary, the Dominican Republic and Africa. This award further highlights the important and far-reaching work being done by the Foundation here and around the world.
Transformations in Ophthalmology, Director for Cataract Programming – Dr. Buxton was selected as the Director for Cataract Programming for the inaugural Transformations in Ophthalmology Symposium, a daylong conference to educate practicing ophthalmologist on the latest advancements in treatments and research.
Intro phacoemulsification course, May 2016 – Sponsored by the Foundation, the Intro to Phaco course provides hands-on training to fellows and residents in the New York metro region.
Advanced phacoemulsification course, April 2016 and January 2017 – Sponsored by the Foundation, the Advanced Phaco course builds on skills taught in Intro to Phaco, furthering the experience, knowledge, and skill set of regional residents and fellows.
6th annual mission to Zambia Eye Clinic – Diana and I returned to Zambia from December 27, 2016 – January 6, 2017 where our work provides advanced eye care, surgical and laser procedures, and medical therapies to an indigent portion of the Zambian population. Working alongside local Zambian staff, we were able to provide much needed services to more than 500 patients.
Awards and sponsorships:
Ophthalmology Residents’ Fund – In conjunction with the director of the resident program at NYEE, we established a new fund to provide access to educational opportunities for our trainees. The Foundation will commit $10k annually to ensure NYEE residents receive a robust education that will prepare them to be leaders in ophthalmic research and care.
Jorge N. Buxton, MD, Attending Microsurgical Teaching Award – The Foundation continues to award this $1,000 prize at graduation to a surgical professor who best exemplifies the dedication and passion to teaching demonstrated by my father for over 30 years at the Infirmary.
Additional activities planned for 2017:
We are very proud of what we have accomplished with the help of friends, family, donors, and patients in 2016 and early 2017, but are keenly aware of the tremendous need for exceptional eye care around the world. As such, we have committed to the following activities:
Funding two scholarships – The Foundation will provide one conference scholarship to each of the Ophthalmology Resident Programs of Mount Sinai Hospital and NYEE. This scholarship will allow two residents to attend a highly-regarded cataract symposium in Naples, FL and bring their knowledge back to their respective resident programs.
Sponsoring an international research fellow – We will sponsor a year-long foreign medical research fellowship to help develop new ocular surface nanotechnology. In addition to fellowship support, we plan to acquire this new technology that currently does not exist in the US to help with its continued development. Both programs will bring new ideas and skills to NYEE.
Expanding our mission work – We have been so inspired by our work in Zambia that we are looking to expand our impact in 2017 or 2018 to South America through a new partnership with A Promise to Peru, an organization providing annual cataract, surgical, and medical mission to the remote villages of the Sacred Valley and other regions in need.
Introducing a new course – In addition to continuing our Phaco courses for residents, we are planning a new course directed at practicing physicians to improve their skills and outcomes called “Cataract Surgery in the Stratosphere”.