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Loebsack visits Iowa City VA

Resident, Matthew Benage, MD, and Dr. Erin Shriver had the opportunity to speak with Representative Dave Loebsack while he was visiting the Iowa City VA today.

"We appreciated his interest to learn more about the VA Eye team."

benage shriver VA opt

2018 Department Group Photo

The department got together in June to take the annual group photo! Click here to download a high-resolution version of the photo.

Department photo June2018

Photo Credit: Susan McClellan/UI Health Care


Welcome, Megan!

Megan Krapfl
Clinical Coordinator, Inherited Eye Disease

Megan Krapfl

Hometown: On a farm outside of Elwood, Iowa. Currently live in Mt. Vernon, Iowa

Hobbies: Boating with family in the summer, volleyball league in the winter, spending time with my kids – I have a husband Nate and a 3-year-old, Dreis and 1-year-old, Everly

I have been a nurse at UIHC for 10 years in Heart and Vascular - both inpatient and outpatient.

Ophthalmology coders featured in July CID newsletter

Our ophthalmology coders were featured in this month's Coding Integrity Division (CID) newsletter, CID Team Spotlight.

- Emily McCallister
- Gail Jons
- Jennifer Juba
- Kristi Howsare
- Alysa Coppinger
- Kirsten Jensen

View July 2018 edition here

July Newsletter ophth spotlight Page 5

New children's line at UI Optical

tomato glassesSubmitted by Molly Bell-

UI Optical at UIHC is now carrying TOMATO glasses for children. The frames retail at $110.00.

"Tomato Glasses are made from strong, flexible non-toxic TR90 materials. (These are safe materials used in medical products inserted in the body and in baby products, such as quality feeding bottles.)  So, Tomato Glasses frames are flexible, display excellent elasticity and do not break easily.

Our products, which are high-quality frames made in South Korea with TR90 material, are specialized for the babies and children. They are not only flexible and light, but they are also adjustable and safe (FDA Approved)."

For more product information, visit: www.tomatoglassesus.com

It's a girl!

Past retina fellow, Elizabeth Tegins, welcomed her daughter, Maeve Siobhán Sharp into the world on June 25, 2018, weighing 7 pounds 1 ounce, 19.5 inches long with brown hair. "Molly is very excited to be a big sister."

maeve sharp

What our patients are saying

Submitted by Joe Schmidt-what our patients are saying

Periodically we share patient satisfaction information and positive comments received through Press-Ganey surveys.

Patient comments received in April:

- Amanda was very good and caring. (General)

- Dr. Olson and the nurses were amazing and so professional, caring and thorough. Truly felt like we were the only people they had to care for that day. Such great care! (Peds Oph)

- The check-in desk lady was very friendly & welcoming. I felt I was moved along through departments & tests at a good speed/didn't have to wait long.  (NeuroOp)

- Lanie was very good about getting back to me, and was patient in answering my questions! (Retina)

- Both *Dr. Thurtell and resident *Dr. Lynch, were very informative and patient explaining everything. (Neuro-Op)

- Everyone in *Dr. Thurtell's area were very friendly and patient. (Neuro-Op)

- All services and care were excellent. Dr. Russell's the best. Scheduling and reception outstanding. (Retina)

- Connie from the ophthalmology clinic has been AMAZING! (Cornea)

- Gold stars again & again to *Teresa Epsy for her expertise in scheduling, response to phone calls & e-mails. She is a real asset to the eye dept. (Plastics)

- (Best thing)Teresa Epsy & *Debbie - I would highly recommend the Eye Clinic based on previous care with *Dr. Allen & *Dr. Olsen (Plastics)

- There is one nurse - *Denise who is so good with the patients & works to make me very comfortable. (Retina)

- People at the front desk in the total eye clinic are uniformly polite and helpful. Among the best in any service at UIHC.

- (Best thing) May seem like a small thing but I really like for the eye photography people to explain to me what they are doing and how they do it. They are very skilled, very kind and have really educated me. I appreciate them very much. (Retina)

- This entire department is positive, willing to assist each other, cheerful, believe in practice of medicine and teamwork with everyone including patient participating. (General)

- Dawn did a great job.  (Glaucoma)

- the technician Annie! so nice and sweet (Contact Lens)

- front desk staff is wonderful, warm and helpful (Cornea)

- I appreciate you getting me in so quickly. I had a severe eye infection that caused a lot of swelling very quickly, and the physician saw me within an hour. The front desk person (male who sits on the right) as well as both Residents (Dr. Risma and Dr. Stiff) and Dr. Greiner were all great. (Cornea)

- Karen Hurt, glaucoma service clerk is always outstanding - She is a ray of sunshine every day. (Glaucoma)

- Michelle, who rooms the patients, is excellent. She is so sweet and my daughter looks forward to seeing her every time go! (Peds Oph)

- Very personable - *Heather (I think) held my hand while I was in la la land - that was very consolable. (Retina)

2018 Resident and Fellow Graduation

View photo album: http://bit.ly/2KZ50S0
View full recording: http://bit.ly/2KOgTOn 


Stacy Thompson Resident Leadership Award
Lindsay De Andrade, MD


Trish Duffel Award
Trish Duffel, MA
Medical Librarian

duffel 1

duffel 2

Resident Awards:

Fellow Teaching Award
Elaine Binkley, MD


Faculty Teaching Award
Erin Shriver, MD, FACS

Erin Shriver

Medical Student Awards:

Resident Teaching Award
Lorraine Provencher, MD


Fellow Teaching Award
Ze Zhang, MD


Faculty Teaching Award
Scott Larson, MD
Scott Larson

Resident Staff Awards

Suzanne Mitts
Coding Specialist


Laura Pitlick
Residency Program Coordinator


Thomas Oetting, MS, MD
Residency Program Directory

oetting 1

oetting 2

Stay tuned for a full recap and album link in next week's update. 

Congratulations to all of our graduates and good luck in your future endeavors. The Iowa Eye family could not be more proud!

To our graduates: If you have not done so already, please send Kelsey Hunold your new e-mail addresses so we can be sure to share the photos with you! Also, if you or your families took photos you would like to share, please send them to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Welcome, Jesi!

Jesi ColeJesi Cole 
Administrative Services Coordinator

Jesi Cole joined the ophthalmology team on May 29th as our new Administrative Services Coordinator in the Administrative Suite. Jesi is coming to us after spending 2 years with Hospital Administration as an assistant to the COO and Director of the UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital and 5 years with Capital Management (UIHC) as an Administrative Services Specialist. 

Jesi currently lives in Riverside with her husband, Nick and two children, Cash (8) and Cali (soon to be 3).

She enjoys spending time with friends and family, attending and watching MLB games (Go Cardinals), watching Red Dirt Country concerts and spends most of her fall/winter months in local gymnasiums watching her son and husband with the local youth wrestling program, the Highland Wrestling Club.

UI-developed technology diagnoses leading cause of blindness

Our patients will be the first in the nation to use a new technology to help catch a diabetes-related eye disease before it causes blindness. And the best part - much of the research used to develop this technology happened right here at the University of Iowa.

“The number of inquiries we’ve received from health care administrators and physicians since IDx-DR received clearance is remarkable,” says Abràmoff, who also is president of IDx and holds faculty appointments in the UI College of Engineering. “This high level of interest shows how badly a solution like IDx-DR is needed to improve outcomes for people with diabetes. There is simply no reason for more than 24,000 individuals to lose vision each year from diabetic retinopathy.”

Read full article: http://bit.ly/2KlnAHF 

IDx provider using  IDx patient using 

Providing new hope through old glasses

Jeffrey LynchUniversity of Iowa graduate Jeffrey Lynch (MD/MPH '06) is helping improve the vision of those in need by distributing free glasses around the globe. So far, his non-profit, ReSpectacle, has given away 30,000+ pairs in over 35 countries.

Read full article: http://bit.ly/2Mv5LCv 

AAO Reception Survey

Submitted by Jesi Cole-

AAO logo

The below link will take you to a Qualtric’s Survey to gauge your interest in attending the 2018 AAO Reception in Chicago on Saturday, October 27th. If you have time, we’d appreciate your input. The survey will be available until the end of the day, Friday, June 29 and will just take a minute to complete.

AAO Reception Survey: http://bit.ly/2KwDo9C 

Great Day for Iowa KidSight!

Submitted by Lori Short-



It was a momentous day for Iowa KidSight yesterday! Vision screening results for approximately 11,000 children who were screened in January, February, and March of this year were uploaded into IRIS (immunization registry) at the Iowa Department of Public Health. All screening results will be entered into IRIS from this point forward. It has been a complex project, taking several years and the involvement of many people to accomplish. At present, school nurses will now have access to this important information for their students. The next quest is getting access for clinic nurses and physicians.


Wellness Corner

Submitted by Tonya Looker-

wellness heroes

Wellness Heroes

Wellness Heroes is a program to recognize faculty and staff members who are practicing healthy behaviors that are inspiring to others in the workplace. Wellness Heroes are nominated because they are contributing to a culture of health and well-being at the University of Iowa.


A Wellness Hero inspires those around them to be healthier. To acknowledge their efforts, a Wellness Hero will be awarded a certificate, the official Wellness Hero prize, and highlighted in the quarterly liveWELL Newsletter.


Any faculty or staff member can nominate any other faculty or staff member. 

A nominated person must meet the following criteria:

  • Making a positive impact in health and wellness in their workplace through a demonstrated behavior or attitude 
  • Be a UI employee
  • Give permission to share their nomination on social media (Facebook and Twitter) and the quarterly liveWELL Newsletter.

Nomination Process

  1. The Wellness Hero Nomination Form is located within Workflow. Enter your HawkID and password to complete the form (you can also turn into Tonya Looker or Lisa Milder.)
  2. You will be contacted within 10 business days to discuss your nomination.

Once approved, a certificate and prize will be issued from liveWELL. It is up to the person/department nominating the Wellness Hero to pick up the prize and certificate from the Wellness Services Suite and then to determine how to recognize the Wellness Hero. Opportunities to recognize the Wellness Hero include, but are not limited to: staff meetings, lunch breaks, staff retreats, or an on-the-spot celebration.

Iowa Lions Eye Bank | Update

Submitted by Ashley Dockendorf-

Letter to Donor Family from Recipient:

Dear Donor Family, 

I am truly sorry for your loss but am extremely grateful for the tissue donation that enabled me to have a corneal transplant. My vision is already improving even during the early healing process. This gift means that your loved one’s tissue will continue to live on and greatly improve the quality of my life. I look forward to being able to drive and read again.

I am a retired physician with 2 daughters and 4 grandchildren. This year we will celebrate our 50th wedding anniversary. I volunteer in Stephen Ministry and Master Gardening. I was active in teaching medical students and have given numerous presentations on health and wellness. 

The transplant procedure and the compassionate care provided by Dr. Kenneth Goins and his staff were outstanding. The care and research done by the University of Iowa’s ophthalmology department is nationally recognized. The role of the Iowa Lions Eye Bank is extremely important to so many recipients. 

Your tissue donation will be a gift of life and quality of life for numerous recipients. It will also be a living memorial for your loved one.

Thank you so much for the gift of sight. I pray you find the Peace of God which passes all understanding.



Thank you to Coralville Lions Club member Marvin for donating his time to help Iowa Lions Eye bank each Wednesday. Marvin has been a huge help to ILEB, and we look forward to his continued efforts each week!

Marvin Volunteering

Welcome, Rashmi!

Rashmi Mallik 
Clinical/Technical Specialist
Iowa Lions Eye Bank

Welcome, Rashmi!

 Rashmi Mallik

Hometown: I am originally from Kathmandu, Nepal. Been in the United States since March 2012.  I currently live in Ely, IA.

Hobbies: I love gardening, traveling to new places, cooking, and spending time with my two little ones. (Riya and Abhi) !!

Alma mater: I graduated from the University of Iowa in March 2015. Major : Microbiology

What our patients are saying

what our patients are sayingPeriodically we share patient satisfaction information and positive comments received through Press-Ganey surveys.

**Entries have been left as they were submitted

Patient comments received in February - March:

- Despite several employees being out sick with the flu, the staff were pleasant, helpful and took the time to answer all questions.  This was my first visit to Dr. Sindt. (Contact Lens)

- We drive 8 hours to see *Dr. Drack and it is worth it. *Dr. Drack and her staff move us through our appointment in a timely manner and everyone is knowledgeable and caring. (PedsOph)

- (Best thing) EVERYONE - friendly, kind, concerned. Always smiling and listen to concerns and visit a bit.  Also take time to be sure that I hear and understand. Always make sure no pain. Always willing to answer questions. (Retina)

- The team working with *Dr. Shriver is excellent. (IRL-Plastics)

- Connie was great (IRL-Optom/C-Lens)

- I have been so grateful for the expertise of both Dr. Bailey and Dr. Johnson. After seeing 5 previous ophthalmologists concerning my problem, I feel I finally have received the right answers. The flow of the visit, all of the additional professionals I saw, were absolutely above and beyond what I could have expected.  (General)

- The receptionist was efficient, knowledgeable, and cheerful! She was very attuned to how well we were understanding her instructions or explanations, and helped us to feel comfortable in a new environment very effectively. (General)

- I Love the Cornea Clinic. Dr. Goins and his Staff are Wonderful. AND, I can see clearly for the first time ever!!!! (Cornea)


- So grateful all the nurses are so caring. They work very hard to help & make your visit as easy as possible - THANK YOU. (Retina)

- Great first experience in ophthalmology for a routine eye check. From the nice admission clerk to Renee, who did most of my exam, and was very kind and nice, to Dr. Johnson who was warmly professional, to the lovely lady in radiology to the discharge clerk, who was also very warm and funny, it was a great experience. Also very efficient. (General)

- Staff recognizes me and is pleasant and courteous. All possibilities for treatment are explored and explained. A joint decision is made, and my fears are recognized and addressed. (Glaucoma)

- The staff was very courteous and respectful. They always treat my son with respect and are very patient with him. He's autistic so I really do appreciate their compassion and understanding with him. Everyone is very friendly. Dr. Kemp is always smiling and so helpful and encouraging. (PedsOph)

- Great scheduler Karen and awesome technicians, Ashley and Dawn made my visit even more enjoyable. very professional staff. Techs need a raise for sure. (Glaucoma)

- From the moment we checked in at the front desk to Connie making sure we found out way to the parking garage that evening at 7 pm, we felt welcome, important and reassured about our situation. Dr. Binkley even excused herself early from another task to come back to our exam room to answer some additional questions about my treatment options before we left the clinic for the evening. We were treated more like family than just another patient and her husband. We appreciate that more than you know. (Retina)

- I believe Janeen took care of me for this visit. She was very knowledgeable & patient. She took her time checking my vision as this is not always easy for me. (General)

- Excellent experience. staff was friendly and efficient. Wait time between tests were minimal. I would definitely recommend this hospital for glaucoma expert opinions and advice to anyone. (Glaucoma)

- Dr. Hayreh's entire staff did an excellent job and went out of their way to be helpful and courteous. (Vascular)

- Lisa Milder efficiently and competently addressed any questions or concerns that I had along the way. (IRL-Cornea)

- I cannot praise *Dr. Sindt and the Contact Lens Clinic enough. Not only is *Sindt consistently bright, cheery, and enthusiastic, but the entire clinic mirrors her positive demeanor. *Dr. Sindt and her associates ALWAYS answer questions readily and thoroughly. (Contact Lens)

- Eye techs were great! (NeuroOp)

- Friendliness of staff and how professional they were. *Lindsay was fantastic, very happy we chose her for the prosthetics. (Plastics)

- I would like to commend the triage nurses who answered my questions very competently. When they didn't think they knew an answer they got one from a dr. and returned my call. That was reassuring to me that information was accurate. (IRL-Glaucoma)

- Dr. Shriver and the entire care team at IRL (and at the outpatient surgery clinic too) were prompt, kind, caring, and extremely helpful. The best thing about my experience with the clinic is that I truly TRUST the care team. (IRL-Plastics)

- Staff with the cornea clinic has been great. Lisa has been great to work with when I have questions or concerns, very prompt with email replies. I appreciate her willingness to get me in last minute when I had a concern a few weeks ago and for getting me appointments at Pomerantz since I work at the hospital. (Cornea)

Iowa Lions Eye Bank | Update

Submitted by Ashley Dockendorf-

Thank you to Chelsea Green, Processing Services Specialist with ILEB for sending photos of her wife and their son Knox adding a handprint to Joey Gase’s racecar at the event last Thursday!

Gase racecar Gase racecar
  Gase racecar

Wellness Corner

Submitted by Tonya Looker-

Wellness icon

Congratulations to Dimitra Triantafilou, pediatrics, on completing all 5 days of Bike Week last month!


Tonya Looker presents Dimitra Triantafilou with her prize for
completing all 5 days of bike week

2018 Iowa Eye Annual Meeting & Alumni Reunion

UPDATE II: For those interested, below is a link to the Stan Thompson video that was shared during the Iowa Eye Reception.

Password: Thompson18

UPDATE: Iowa Eye recording is now available: http://bit.ly/2t6WFV7

Ophthalmologists and alumni from across Iowa, the U.S., Canada, and Australia returned to Iowa City for the 2018 Iowa Eye Annual Meeting and Alumni Reunion. The meeting featured a fantastic program of distinguished speakers, stimulating talks, and interesting cases. A link to review the talks and lectures will be available here soon.

Attendees had a great time connecting with colleagues and friends. Check out images of who was there (https://iowaeyealumni.shutterfly.com) and if you are among those who attended, please take one minute to provide your feedback on the event: Iowa Eye Feedback Survey.

Plus, we recognized neuro-ophthalmologist and emeritus faculty member, Dr. H. Stanley Thompson. Many of Dr. Thompson’s former fellows were in town to help us celebrate his career and legacy. 

Mark your calendar and plan to join us next year for the 2019 Iowa Eye Annual Meeting and Alumni Reunion, June 2019.

Iowaeye1 Iowaeye2
Iowaeye3 Iowaeye4

About The Update

The Ophthalmology Update is a newsletter for employees of the Department of Ophthalmology. Editor & staff writer: Kelsey Hunold (7-8001) This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; staff writers: Trish Duffel This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Joe Schmidt This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; copy editor: Peg Harris; Department Head: Keith D. Carter, MD.