Retinal surgeons warn that reducing eye surgery licensing requirements is not in the best interests of Californians


PITTSBURGH, August 22, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — The American Society of Retina Specialists (ASRS), the world’s largest retina specialist organization, joins Safe Eyes America in strongly opposing AB 2236, legislation currently under consideration in California Senate.

AB 2236 dangerously reduces the medical, clinical, and surgical training requirements to obtain a license in California to perform eye surgery. If AB 2236 were to be enacted, an individual would no longer be required to complete medical school and surgical training required to obtain a license to perform eye surgery. ASRS and Safe Eyes America emphasize that such a significant reduction in surgical licensing requirements is detrimental to surgical outcomes and patient safety.

Retina specialists are ophthalmologists (doctors who complete 4 years of medical school followed by 4 years of training in eye diseases and surgery) with an additional 2 years specializing in the treatment of the retina (the delicate structure in the the deepest part of the eye which converts light into nerve signals necessary for vision). As part of their training, all retinal specialists are trained to perform all surgical procedures included in AB 2236. This knowledge of eye surgery, its risks, what it involves and the consequences for the patient are at the basis of the ASRS position. opposite AB 2236

Kurt HeitmanMD, Board Member of Safe Eyes America, says, “Every surgical procedure performed on the eye or eyelids requires education, training, and experience to make the correct diagnosis, make a decision on the best treatment, whether it is surgery or not, and developing the ability to perform the procedure.These are skills developed over years and shortcuts are simply not safe for patients. Anywhere on the way to surgery could affect the patient’s vision or even be life threatening.

From one day to the next, the California The Senate will vote on AB 2236. Jeannette MoffaConcerned Patient and Board Member of Safe Eyes America said, “We are proud that ASRS, America’s Retina Specialists, is joining us in educating patients about the dangerous changes to the law in force in AB 2236. Lowering licensing requirements to allow non-physicians (optometrists) to perform surgery is not safe. Californians need to know that.

The California The State Senate could make a final decision on AB 2236 any day. It’s just not safe. Please contact your California State Senator NOW and urge them to Vote NO on AB 2236. To find your State Senator click on the following link: ( The California the legislature adjourns for the year August 31.

About Safe Eyes America

Safe Eyes America is a 501(c) 4 nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting the provision of the highest quality medical and surgical eye care to the American public..

SOURCE Safe Eyes America

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