An article from students participating in the University of Waterloo Mentorship Program.
Authors: Jennifer Tran, Cindy Shan, Marie Sarabusky
It was an amazing experience visiting Dr. Cheryl Letheren and her wonderful team at her clinic in London. As soon as we walked in, we were welcomed into a traditional and homey clinic, very fitting since it is an incredibly established practice. We took a tour of the clinic and were amazed to see the huge selection of frames and the state-of-the-art equipment that was newly installed. The lovely staff demonstrated how versatile the new OCT imaging system was and how much easier it was to to take a fundus photo, OCT of the optic disc and macula. What was even more impressive was the fact that it could do anterior segment imaging as well, which means no more gonioscopy! Overall, the clinic seemed to have just about everything you would want – a well-stocked dispensary, modern equipment, contact lens fitting area, and even a lens edging machine.
After observing the intricacy of her practice, Dr. Letheren kindly took us out to lunch at Toboggan. It was fascinating to hear that Dr. Letheren is pushing the boundaries of vision therapy in her own clinic and also in the city of London, while working with Parkwood Institute in a highly collaborative manner with other healthcare professionals. She is renowned for managing traumatic brain injuries and doing vision therapy in her own practice. As a result, many of her patients are referrals from ophthalmologists, GPs, and physiotherapists. Even after 20 years, her practice is still evolving and she is looking to move into a larger space so that she can have a room dedicated for vision therapy. Furthermore, Dr. Letheren shared insightful advice on starting a practice since she purchased her practice right out of graduation. She advised us to think about getting a group practice over a solo practice because it is easier to manage and allows you to maintain a good work-life balance. All in all, it was so inspiring learning from Dr. Letheren and we are so grateful for this experience!