Photo from left: Scott Hettrick, CEO, Arcadia Chamber of Commerce; John Wuo, Mayor of Arcadia; Rohit Varma, MD, MPH, Director, USC Eye Institute; Tom Jackiewicz, Senior Vice President and CEO, USC Health; Linda Lam, MD, Vice Chair for Satellite Clinical Affairs, USC Eye Institute; Carmen A. Puliafito, MD, MBA, Dean, Keck School of Medicine of USC. Courtesy of Meher Kourouyan / Reel Light Pictures

The University of Southern California (USC) Eye Institute, one of the nation’s Top 10 ophthalmology departments nationwide according to U.S. News & World Report, opened its latest community clinic at an event there last night at 65 N. First Ave., Ste. 101, in Arcadia, California. As part of USC’s commitment to Southern California, the ophthalmology clinic has served the San Gabriel Valley community for 20 years. The new clinic, which moved two miles north from its previous location, expands its services in a 3,161-square-foot state-of-the-art space adjacent to the Metro Gold Line’s future Arcadia Station.

As one of six locations in Southern California where USC Eye Institute experts practice, the new Arcadia clinic offers comprehensive eye services, with sub-specialty expertise in glaucoma, cornea and retina care as well as ocular plastic surgery. Staffed to serve the Arcadia community, the clinic’s ophthalmologists also speak Mandarin, Cantonese, Vietnamese, Korean, Hindi, Spanish and German.

The grand opening event welcomed 150 people and was hosted by USC Health Senior Vice President and CEO Tom Jackiewicz, Keck School of Medicine of USC Dean Carmen Puliafito, MD, MBA, and USC Eye Institute Director Rohit Varma, MD, MPH. Also in attendance were Arcadia Mayor John Wuo and Chamber of Commerce CEO Scott Hettrick.

“Keck Medicine of USC is dedicated to bringing our exceptional medical care to the local communities of greater Los Angeles by expanding our clinic locations. We want to be closer to where our patients live,” Jackiewicz said. “Two miles is not a far move, but this new location is closer to the soon-to-be-built Metro station, making it more convenient for the local community to receive great patient care.”

The city of Arcadia, home to the Santa Anita Park racetrack, is predominantly Asian, a population that is more susceptible to high myopia (near-sightedness), myopic retinal degeneration including retinal holes and retinal detachments and narrow angle glaucoma.

“We specialize in understanding and treating both the common and the most complex and challenging eye diseases that other eye centers may not be able to manage,” said Varma. “Asian-Americans should pay special consideration to eye conditions such as myopia, narrow angle glaucoma, cataracts, dry eye, diabetic retinopathy, and age-related macular degeneration. We want our community in Arcadia and the surrounding cities to know that we have the expertise in the early diagnosis and treatment of these conditions before they can become blinding.”

Varma, who also is professor and chair of the Department of Ophthalmology at the Keck School of Medicine of USC, is a glaucoma specialist and has dedicated his career to studying the development of eye diseases in minority populations. He is the principal investigator for multiple National Institutes of Health-funded epidemiological studies, including the Chinese American Eye Study.

Other ophthalmologists who will see patients at the Arcadia clinic include Linda Lam, M.D. (retinal diseases); Bibianna Reiser, M.D. (corneal disease, cataract and refractive surgery); Jonathan Song, M.D. (corneal disease, cataract and refractive surgery) and Sandy Zhang-Nunes, M.D. (oculo-facial plastic surgery).

The newly expanded Arcadia clinic becomes the latest location where USC Eye Institute experts practice in Southern California, including: Los Angeles, Beverly Hills, Pasadena, Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and Los Angeles County + USC Medical Center.