How do the Family Specialists at Partners for Pediatric Vision and the eye doctors work together?
Pediatric eye doctors specialize in diagnosing visual impairment, assessing how young babies and children are using their remaining vision and if glasses, surgery or other visual aids may be beneficial.
Low vision optometrists specialize in determining the extent of a child’s functional vision and focus on vision development or how vision is learned. They prescribe glasses or other low vision devices like hand held or video magnifiers or telescopes to allow a child to use their vision to the greatest extent possible.
Our partner doctors also provide recommendations for how a child can best use their vision during every day activities at home or at school and how to strengthen the use of their vision in cases where vision can improve. During the exam, parents ask questions about what and how much their child is seeing and the doctors and our Family Specialists respond with suggestions about how to encourage visual skills or how to accommodate for vision loss. Low Vision technology is demonstrated when appropriate including apps, video magnification and other devices.
The Family Specialists at Partners for Pediatric Vision are available to meet a family prior, during or after an exam and provide follow up support for the information discussed during the exam and any additional questions a family may have. Families are given information, resources and guidance about their child's visual impairment and strategies for encouraging vision skills as well as adapting to a visual impairment. Our Family Specialists are available to speak with professionals on a child and family's behalf about the impact of the visual impairment.
Here's what our partner pediatric doctors say about working with PPV:
"Partners for Pediatric Vision provides a much-needed support to families of children with low vision. As a low vision optometrist, I witness firsthand how frustrating it can be for families to get the services they need for their children. Families are often confused and overwhelmed by information given to them by medical professionals, therapists, and teachers. Partners for Pediatric Vision has been instrumental in bridging the gap between families and the services they need. Whether it is contacting a child’s in-home or school teacher to explain their diagnosis, helping to find funding or equipment, or simply providing a shoulder to cry on, Partners for Pediatric Vision plays a crucial role before, during, and after my examinations. "
Angela M. Shihady, O.D., F.A.A.O.
Low Vision Optometrist
“We love working with PPV! The Family Specialists provide a value-added experience for our patient’s as well as valuable support services for parents. Partners for Pediatric Vision provides such amazing follow-up for our families and brings a closer connection to our clinic and the services we provide. Additionally, our collaboration helps our young doctors learn the educational perspective needed to treat children with visual impairment and understand how to work closely with early interventionists and school districts to provide necessary services. It’s a wonderful partnership and it has changed the way we work with families."
Catherine Heyman, O.D., F.A.A.O.
Associate Professor, Assistant Dean for Student Affairs,
Southern CA College of Optometry Marshall B. Ketchum University
"Partners for Pediatric Vision is a tremendously important part of our vision team. They develop a relationship with the child and the family and they are able to identify the individual needs of each child and the family. It Is most helpful to have Partners for Pediatric Vision Family Specialists attend the eye examinations with the child and family because they are able to give us the information that we need so that we can most effectively help the child. In addition, having Partners for Pediatric Vision at the appointments makes the visit to the eye doctor so much more relaxing and fun! As a doctor, we really appreciate the support from the Family Specialists including reminding the family how to perform the activities to help a child to use his or her glasses and low vision aids to learn and play."
Bill Takeshita, O.D. F.A.A.O., F.C.O.V.D.
Parent Educator, Partners for Pediatric Vision
"Partners for Pediatric Vision (PPV) has been an invaluable asset to our pediatric low vision patients and their families. PPV provides families the resources to implement our management recommendations by connecting patients with the recommended vision services and low vision aids. Having a PPV staff member on site during the low vision evaluation allows PPV to connect with families and provide a helping hand to the patients after the exam. PPV has made a tremendously positive impact on our patients; they are left with a stronger understanding of their diagnosis, a road map to receiving the vision services they need, and a feeling of empowerment. I feel it is necessary for any low vision optometrist to work with an organization like PPV when managing low vision patients as they have become an integral part of our management team. They are a unique resource in the pediatric low vision community and we are so fortunate to have the opportunity to collaborate with such a
compassionate and capable group.”
Desi Akhamzadeh, O.D.
Pediatric Optometry and Vision Therapy
University Eye Center at Ketchum Health Los Angeles
"Our partnership with PPV enhances our clinical care and makes it more holistic in that PPV can take the time to follow up and guide the families on additional needs and answer questions that may not always arise during our exam. It gives the family time to process the exam and discussion, to think of questions and to become more familiar with the systems surrounding low vision care. I believe this is critical to maximizing a child with low vision’s empowerment and their family's success in adapting to raising a child with visual impairment."
Melissa Contreras, O.D., MPH, F.A.A.O.
University Eye Center at Ketchum Health Los Angeles