DALLAS—Unifeye Vision Partners (UVP), a leading network of comprehensive eyecare providers, said it has completed a strategic partnership with Shaaf Eye Center, based in Rancho Mirage, Calif. In addition, UVP said it is launching its organically grown retina sub-specialty practice, Minnesota Retina Associates, with the first of two planned locations seeing patients starting this week, according to the group’s announcement on Monday. Together these two practices significantly expand UVP's ability to better serve both the Southern California and Twin Cities markets, the announcement noted.

The terms of the new partnership with Shaaf Eye Center was not disclosed. Shaaf Eye Center is UVP's 8th practice in the state of California. UVP is a portfolio company of Waud Capital Partners.

UVP has now extended its operations to a network of 97 providers, 36 clinic locations, and seven ambulatory surgery centers.

Shaaf Eye Center, which has provided eyecare throughout Coachella Valley since 2004, is located in Rancho Mirage, just 4 miles from Palm Desert. It is led by two board-certified ophthalmologists, Dr. Mehdi Shaaf and Dr. Kevin Prendiville. The practice offers a full range of ophthalmology services, including routine eye exams, laser vision correction, cataracts, oculoplastic, surgical retina, glaucoma, cornea and orbital tumors.

Recognizing an increasing demand for medical retina services in the Twin Cities market of Minnesota, UVP worked with its partners Minnesota Eye Consultants and Northwest Eye to found a new, third practice in the local market—Minnesota Retina Associates, focused on serving the unmet need for high-quality, board-certified retina subspecialists, according to the announcement.

Joining the practice's existing Dr. Marni Feldmann at Minnesota Retina Associates will be two new physicians—Dr. Tara Schaab, who starts seeing patients this week, and Dr. Mehdi Roozbahani, who starts in September. This week, the practice opens the first of its two locations, with Bloomington opening July 7 and a second clinic opening in Golden Valley next month.

"As always, we are excited to partner with outstanding ophthalmic practices to grow our UVP community, but even more importantly—we are excited to grow our ability to serve those patients who have been unable to receive high-quality vision care services due to a lack of providers or capacity in their area,” Martin Rash, CEO of Unifeye Vision Partners, said. "With these two practices, we proudly expand our ability to serve patients and the referring community in Coachella Valley, California, and in the Twin Cities of Minnesota.”

Unifeye Vision Partners was formed to partner with leading eyecare providers in targeted markets throughout the U.S. The company provides management and support services to ophthalmology and optometry practices, as well as single-specialty eye surgery centers.