NorthShore Health Centers welcomes new optometrist to their Hammond clinic

NorthShore Health Centers welcomes new optometrist to their Hammond clinic

NorthShore Health Centers continued to grow their team of expert healthcare providers last month with the addition of Dr. Charmi Shiyarwala, O.D., an experienced optometrist, to their Hammond clinic.

A graduate of the Michigan College School of Optometry, Shiyarwala spent seven years practicing in Illinois – including Chicago. There, she was introduced to NorthShore and was immediately drawn in by their patient-oriented approach to healthcare.

“I really love helping patients with their vision needs,” said Shiyarwala. “So, when I came across NorthShore and their mission, I knew that I wanted to work for an organization that treats everyone who needs care, regardless of their ability to pay. I felt they were the perfect fit for me.”

Shiyarwala’s love for optometry goes back to her childhood. One day, her dad found out she was having trouble seeing the board at school. He took her to the optometrist right away and being the curious child she was, Shiyarwala was immediately enthralled.

“He prescribed me with glasses and after that, contacts,” she said. “I was really fascinated with how he did the exam and came up with a prescription that was customized for my eyes that enabled me to see so clearly.”

That curiosity persisted, and when she worked for an optometrist in her college years, Shiyarwala was hooked. Now, her favorite part of the job is giving kids that same kind of positive experience that led her to fall in love with the work.

“With kids especially, I like doing the binocular workup to see how both eyes are working together,” she said. “It’s not only about helping the kids see clearly, but also comfortably.”

From her own experience, she knows just how frustrating poor vision can be for kids – but they often do not know how to explain their problem until they put on a pair of glasses.

“One time a patient’s mom came in to talk after I prescribed their child glasses,” Shiyarwala recalled. “She told me that there was a squirrel that’d been coming into their backyard for years, but her kid hadn’t noticed it until she got her glasses. Other kids come in and just aren’t interested in things like reading because they can’t see the words comfortably. Helping kids through those things is one of the most rewarding parts of my job.”

Though Shiyarwala started at NorthShore just a few weeks ago, she is already excited to call it home.

“I love that we see anyone and everyone, because even if we don’t accept their insurance, we can provide affordable care that they need,” she said. “Not only that, but I’m also able to collaborate with the other healthcare professionals here to provide patients with more complete, comprehensive care.