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For A Good Cause:

Vision of aid helps others to see

Newport eye surgeon’s program offers free eye surgeries to individuals who otherwise wouldn’t be able to afford it.

November 21, 2007|By Sue Thoensen

He traveled with a group of more than 60 doctors who were part of Project Vietnam, a nonprofit program of the American Academy of Pediatrics established in 1996 and based in the U.S. that provides hygiene, medical and educational facilities in Vietnam.

Mitsubishi had donated state-of-the art eye equipment to the hospital in Hanoi last year but the surgeons there didn’t know how to use it.

Feinerman and his technician opened the equipment, had it up and running within an hour, and performed 10 surgeries the first day.

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They could have continued at that pace for the remainder of his time there, but from the beginning, Feinerman’s goal was to teach the doctors there how to perform the surgery themselves.

Once they were shown how to do them, the doctors caught on quickly, and by the time Feinerman left, they were performing three surgeries a day.

“That’s better than zero,” which is what they were doing before, Feinerman said.

He’s planning on returning to Vietnam in about six months, just to follow up and see how they’re doing.

“I love what I do, we love what we do,” he said.

“It’s just nice to do it for the sake of doing it. There’s no ulterior motive other than just helping people, and that’s just really why I went into this in the first place.”

Every December, on the anniversary of his surgery, John Wilkins delivers Starbucks coffee and pastries to the staff at Feinerman’s office.

He said it’s his way of expressing his gratitude.

LEARN MORE

The Feinerman Vision Center, 320 Superior Ave., Suite 350, Newport Beach accepts requests for people interested in becoming a candidate for Project In-Sight. Submissions may be e-mailed to production@frank groffinc.com or faxed to (562) 438-1188. For more information, call (949) 631-4780 or go to www.feinermanvision.com.


SUE THOENSEN may be reached at (714) 966-4627 or at sue.thoensen@latimes.com.

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