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Tasmania captures heart of optometrist

SAYING GOODBYE: Anthony Hogan has spent the last 33 years caring for the eyes of Casino and District.
SAYING GOODBYE: Anthony Hogan has spent the last 33 years caring for the eyes of Casino and District. Doug Eaton

CASINO optometrist Anthony Hogan treated people's eyes in Casino for so long, it wasn't unusual to have three generations of the same family on his books at the same time.

"It's probably four generations in some cases," Mr Hogan chuckled.

The well-respected eye doctor on Friday retired his 35-year-old Casino practice on the corner of Barker and Centre streets to embark on a new life chapter.

Mr Hogan and his wife Lorraine will join their son and daughter in Launceston, Tasmania, where he will take a break from the demands of running a full-time practice to treat patients part-time.

Mr Hogan said eye care had changed dramatically since he started his career in Casino in 1979.

"What has really changed optometry in the last 10 years has been the digital technology," he said.

"Computerised digital imaging has probably had the single biggest impact on the way we manage our patients."

As a result the treatment of macular degeneration has seen huge advances, with equipment to detect it earlier and save more people's vision than ever before.

Advances in lens and contact lens technology have also given people many more options to correct their vision problems, along with massive advances in laser surgery, and particularly cataract surgery.

"It was major surgery 30 years ago... people had their heads sandbagged and couldn't move for two weeks... and then didn't see very well afterwards."

"Whereas now they end up with young eyes again after getting cataracts removed."

Reflecting on his time in Casino where most of his life was spent so far, Mr Hogan said it had been a pleasure to work in such a loyal and supportive community.

"I've loved every minute of it," he said.

"The patients have been wonderful, I have many patients who are friends, who have expressed their best wishes to me. I'm humbled by the letters I've received; the phone calls.

"The highlight for me is having such a full and satisfying professional life in such a loyal and friendly community, and I can't ask for anything more."



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