Meet the Nominee: Maxwell Cheng, OD
By Essilor USA
Maxwell Cheng is passionate about helping people in need by improving their eyesight, and it keeps him motivated to keep growing in his profession as an Optometrist. He has helped many thousands of patients around the world, including:
- For 7 years Dr. Cheng helped organize an annual health fair to serve the homeless of Los Angeles’ Skid Row who do not have access to health care and glasses.
- For the past 7 years, he has organized the Eye Team for an annual medical mission with AOJAH. In Jamaica, there is about one optometrist per 190,000 people, so many will go without an eye exam for their entire lifetime. Dr. Cheng organizes 35 volunteers to provide eyecare in rural mountain villages and helps optometry students develop their clinical skills.
- In addition to providing exams and glasses to over 1600 Jamaicans annually, Dr. Cheng’s team treats glaucoma in this country which has one of the highest rates in the world. All year, they work to get enough medications to treat over 200 patients who cannot afford medications. They also organize glaucoma surgeries and provide white canes for those already blinded by glaucoma. Dr. Cheng also organizes cataract surgeries for the past several years, recruiting the surgical team, getting the surgical supplies and equipment delivered overseas, and identifying the patients who need the surgeries.
- In 2012, Dr. Cheng taught at Nepal's Lumbini Eye Institute, a hospital serving patients from both India and Nepal. He examined patients with unusual eye diseases and lectured to ophthalmology residents, optometrists, and ophthalmic assistants. Since his time teaching there, he has continued to provide educational support and equipment to improve eye care in Nepal, which has only about 6 optometrists for 30 million people.
- Additionally Dr. Cheng has volunteered with VOSH in the Philippines following the devastating Tacloban typhoon and in Peru to provide eyecare to the indigenous Quechua population.