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Ben’s Story: Restoring Sight and Livelihood

By Allison Howard

Imagine your vision slowly getting worse, almost like a timer counting down. You aren’t sure of the colors on a traffic signal so driving becomes hazardous. Now, thanks to our generous donors and volunteers, 52-year-old patient, Ben, describes getting much-needed cataract surgery as “I feel like I was reborn.”

Ben can’t think of a better way to describe the moment he opened his eyes, and at last, could see clearly.

Previously, Ben, who is a kitchen manager, says his day-to-day life was a challenge.

“The restaurant where I work at is very fast paced, and I would get lost and behind due to my loss of vision. I couldn’t watch TV; I couldn’t see at night due to glare. I was scared to drive at night.”

Ben knew he needed help and needed to support his wife and daughter, but the cataract in his left eye continued to get worse, making his vision cloudy and unreliable. Ben went to Mission Arlington and was referred to an ophthalmologist to have the cataract removed, but he was unable to afford the surgery.

Project Access Tarrant County (PATC) works with other local nonprofits to refer patients to our team of volunteer doctors and clinics. Services are provided at reduced costs so patients like Ben are able to receive critical medical care.

Ben’s wife received treatments from PATC previously, so he reached us to us. After consultation with Dr. Tyler Moore, we coordinated with Baylor Surgicare who provided the venue for the procedure and Anesthesia Associates, Fort Worth Division of USAP, who provided the anesthesia care.

Ben and his family knew that it would be impossible to pay for the surgery without insurance and that cost would not be a barrier thanks to supporters to PATC.

Dr. Moore performed the surgery, and Ben couldn’t be more thrilled with the outcome.

“I couldn’t see if the light was red or green and I’d have to ask my wife for help, but now I no longer feel upset and mad that I couldn’t do what I wanted,” he says. “I can drive again comfortably. It’s totally different than when I was scared to drive.”

Donor support allows patients like Ben to resume normal life activities

“I am so thankful,” Ben says. “Project Access has changed my life.”

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