New England College of Optometry Breaks Ground on New Clinical Campus

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BOSTON—The New England College of Optometry, an independent graduate college of optometry that traces its history to 1894, has broken ground on a three-phase project that will expand the clinical campus and create a new, style-driven optical dispensary,” according to a post on the college’s website.

The initial phase includes the build-out of the New England College of Optometry Center for Eye Care, a style-driven optical dispensary and high-tech primary care clinic that will open to the public in March, according to the post. The center will be in the same building as the existing New England Eye clinic, but the new center sits at street level on Commonwealth Avenue, which will provide high visibility and easy patient access.

In addition, the name of the center will change to New England College of Optometry Center for Eye Care upon the opening of the new optical dispensary and clinic. The work on the expansion began at the end of December, according to the post.

One of the objectives of the project is to “transform optometric education by enabling students to understand new models of eyecare delivery, the impact of health care reform on patient care, innovative teaching methodologies and best practices in clinical operations,” according to the announcement.

“[The project] will be comprised of three parts – a new flagship optometric clinic and optical dispensary, a clinical specialty service that includes rehabilitative vision care and clinical research, and a state-of-the-art student clinical training facility,” Dr. Robert DiMartino, academic dean, said in the announcement.

The second phase of construction will create the specialty clinic area, which will initially offer low vision rehabilitation and occupational therapy for visually impaired patients. Adjacent spaces for clinical research, clinical instrumentation training for NECO students, clinical simulation training, and electro-diagnostic testing, will open later this year.