“Seeing is Believing” is a phrase most people know and use. It could be considered a colloquialism in our culture – a phrase that encapsulates an idea we all can relate to. We use it due to the universal reality of our vision as one of the most important senses we have. And although we would all hate to lose our sense of taste or smell, not being able to see the world we live in would radically alter daily life. From witnessing the glory of the changing of the leaves to seeing the smile on your child’s face, vision is precious to us all.
And no one takes eye health more seriously than the doctors and staff at Olympia Vision Clinic. With locations in Lacey and Olympia, the clinic has been serving patients for over 28 years.
The clinic was started by Dr. Dale Tosland. After receiving his Doctor of Optometry degree in 1983 from The Pacific University College of Optometry, and completing an externship in Hawaii, Dr. Tosland joined a local longtime vision practice in Olympia. After five years, he purchased the practice, renaming it Olympia Vision Clinic.
Originally downtown on Fifth Avenue, the clinic moved to Capitol Boulevard at the site of the current Subway restaurant. In 2001, the clinic moved again, expanding to their location on Cooper Point Road, just above the Westside Barnes and Noble. The Lacey clinic is located near Yelm Highway and College Street.
“Our goal is to provide excellent quality care for people of all ages in our community,” shares Operations Manager Susan Johnson. And Dr. Tosland, and the five additional doctors he has hired over the years, meet this goal daily.
Each physician is a trained Optometrist, and can see patients for multiple eye care needs; however several of the doctors have areas of specialty. Founder Dr. Tosland specializes in contact lenses, particularly hard to fit patients. And if you are someone who has had difficulty finding comfortable contacts, you will appreciate his expertise when you finally have the right fit. “He is on the cutting edge of new contact lens technologies and works very hard to get his patients the best visual acuity possible,” shares Johnson.
Additionally, Dr. Tosland focuses on macular degeneration, glaucoma, and diabetic eye disease. His experience and commitment to the care of his patients have made him a guide for the newer doctors as they’ve joined Olympia Vision Clinic. This is particularly true with Dr. Angela Loeb who also specializes in contact lens patients and is learning from Dr. Tosland’s years of experience, giving her patients the same excellent care they are accustomed to.
Dr. Joanna Haws, practicing at the Lacey clinic, specializes in Pediatric eye care. Having suffered from vision difficulties as a child and young adult, and enduring many treatments herself, she has dedicated her career to working with children who face challenges with their vision from a very early age. She works with state and local preschools and other local organizations to assist with infant and toddler early vision interventions. Additionally, Dr. Haws is fluent in Spanish and travelled to Chile, treating pediatric eye conditions in areas without access to care.
Dr. Mary Kutch has been with the clinic for several years and is a low vision specialist. “Dr. Kutch is the only doctor in the community who specializes in low vision and her ultimate goal is to help patients enjoy their daily life. Maybe it’s just reading the newspaper or enjoying knitting or crochet, but it means the world to these patients,” explains Johnson. Dr. Kutch receives many referrals for her services from other local doctors and enjoys helping her patients improve their quality of life. She is fluent in Spanish and is a fellow of the American Academy of Optometry.
Dr. Trent Cluny rounds out the staff with his relaxed demeanor which endears him to his primary eye care patients. He brings expertise in many areas to the practice, but his greatest satisfaction is the daily care of his patient’s vision. Dr. Cluny is also fluent in Spanish, a great benefit to the areas second language patients.
One of the guiding principles of Olympia Vision Clinic, and all the doctors and staff, is giving back to their community. Over six years ago, the doctors became involved with the Free Vision Clinic at the Union Gospel Mission. They worked to get equipment donated and get the clinic up and running. Currently all five doctors, as well as key staff members, volunteer at the Free Vision Clinic. Additionally, they sponsor the Hands On Children’s Museum Parent Resource Center which provides materials and guidance for parents of young children as well as work with the local Lions Club and their glasses donation program.
One of their favorite community events is their annual participation in the Burger Hut that the Lions Club has each year at Lakefair. “We’ve been doing this for ten or fifteen years and it’s something all the staff loves and looks forward to each year,” shares Johnson.
With a full optical boutique in each location and excellent opticians on staff to fit patients with new glasses, Olympia Vision Clinic really is a full service eye care provider for Olympia and Lacey. With their dedication to training and continuing education for all members of their team, they will continue to strive for excellence for years to come.
“We take pride in what we do here, in the products we sell and care we provide to patients, but more than that, we take pride in who we are and the respectful, fun and inclusive environment we have created,” explains Johnson. “We love it here and we think our patients do too.”
1625 Cooper Point Rd SW in Olympia
5210 Corporate Center Ct SE, Suite A in Lacey