The vision therapy (VT) segment of Lyons Family Eye Care has grown exponentially since the practice opened in 2011. Practice owner Stephanie Lyons, OD, started off as the only vision therapist. A year later, Dominick Maino, OD, MEd, FAAO, FCOVD-A, joined the team at the Chicago, Illinois, practice. Thanks to referrals from school teachers, reading specialists and administrators as well as other medical professionals, the practice now has four vision therapists on staff, providing VT for a total of 50-60 patients per week.
Dr. Lyons expanded her practice into her basement level last year, doubling her square footage and creating a designated area for VT. Expansion isn't always an option in an urban environment, Dr. Lyons says, so she was lucky to secure this extra space.
The new VT area incorporates the practice's signature deep orange color used on the main floor of the practice. There are activities set up throughout the VT space and computer stations are available for each therapist. They also added a roomy reception area for parents, where the practice's VT Stars are proudly displayed. The larger, private space for VT has been helped them better handle the large volume of VT patients that now come into the office each week.
Before Dr. Lyons took over this office space, it was an art and antique gallery. “The space was completely empty with just four walls and nothing else. We built everything from the ground up,” she says. Dr. Lyons and John Lyons, her husband and the practice business manager, began to transform the space with a wide-open reception area, optical and children’s area with wood flooring.
Upstairs, those pops of orange are complemented by natural brick walls, and Dr. Lyons brought that orange hue throughout the office from the exam room chairs and display cabinets in the optical, to the children's area and even in the restroom. By design, it’s very homey, as the couple chose household furniture rather than typical doctor’s office furniture. The staff area in the kitchen includes a big table, used for meals and office meetings. “We wanted to make it a really comfortable place,” she says.
Dr. Lyons and John Lyons will continue to analyze their productivity in this expanded space, and Dr. Lyons says that they will decide whether they want to purchase it or move to another location in the coming years.
WO spoke with Dr. Stephanie Lyons in 2011, just a few months after opening Lyons Family Eye Care. Click here to read her story.