Welcome to the Donald K. Johnson Eye Institute. We offer patients who live with vision impairment and blindness the latest treatments, using state-of-the-art technology, to help restore their sight. Our clinicians work together with vision scientists to advance discoveries from the lab to the clinic faster, improving patient care sooner. Already a leader in North America, our collective goal is to be one of the top five vision institutions in the world.

We care for patients with the most complex conditions from across the province. With more than 85,000 patient visits across five clinics, we are one of the largest, busiest, and most comprehensive clinical programs in North America.

Our care team has made significant advancements in recent years, including the surgical repair of complicated retinal detachments and macular holes, sutureless corneal transplants, and limbal stem cell transplants. Most recently, Canada's first and only successful Argus II "bionic" eye surgical implants, restoring the vision of six previously blind patients. As recognized leaders in their fields, our physicians are at the forefront of state-of-the-art vision care.

Meet Our Physicians

Our scientists strive to understand how vision works, both in healthy and diseased eyes, with the goal of eliminating blindness and impaired vision in people. Our program spans research into the molecular and cellular mechanisms of retinal disease, to developing new approaches for retinal health assessment and vision rehabilitation in patients with blinding eye disease. Learn more about our researchers.

Dr. Efrem Mandelcorn and Dr. Valerie Wallace co-direct the Donald K. Johnson Eye Institute. Dr. Mandelcorn leads clinical activities and Dr. Wallace is head of vision research. Together, they strive to build a culture of best practices, to advance the latest treatments for people with vision loss, and ensure patients receive optimal care in the safest environment.

The prestigious designation of "Institute" allows them to recruit leaders in the field, establish partnerships with complementary organizations, and attract top students from around the world, to learn from our experts.

The naming of the Donald K. Johnson Eye Institute recognizes Don Johnson and his wife, Anna McCowan-Johnson's, long-standing visionary support of our program. In addition to their tireless advocacy on behalf of the program, their gifts, totalling more than $15 million, are funding investments in research endeavours, staff recruitment, and equipment, that will be the bedrock of the Donald K. Johnson Eye Institute moving forward.

In 2007, Don and Anna made a $5 million gift to establish the Donald K. Johnson Eye Centre at Toronto Western Hospital. Their gift helped to catapult the program onto the world stage, making it one of the top five programs in North America.

In 2015,  in honour of Don’s 80th birthday, the Johnsons transformed vision care again, with a gift of $10 million in support of advanced clinical treatment and leading-edge vision science research. There is no doubt the Johnson’s tremendous contribution is a gift to patients in Canada and around the world – patients who will benefit from groundbreaking care and research.

The life-altering consequences of vision loss are profound. Loss of mobility, social isolation, emotional distress and the loss of independence are examples of how individuals and families are touched by vision loss. About 20,000 Canadians join the ranks of the visually impaired every year. This number will continue to rise at an increasingly high rate as our population ages. The Donald K. Johnson Eye Institute is here to help.

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