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Hudson Building makes longtime Eye Center dream a reality (one img, no callout)

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A longtime dream became reality on June 11 with the dedication of the Hudson Building, the new clinical pavilion at the Duke Eye Center. Duke Medicine leadership, Eye Center faculty and staff, supporters, and other special guests gathered to celebrate the building completion and tour the space before it opens to patients on June 29.

The spacious, light-filled building adds much-needed clinical examination space and enhances the patient experience in a wide variety of ways. The building features range from convenient parking and more seating, to enhanced efficiency with check-in and check-out times, to centralized testing and photography areas. 

"This new edifice is much more than a beautiful building," said A. Eugene Washington, MD, Chancellor for Health Affairs, Duke University, and President and CEO of the Duke University Health System. "It is yet another symbol of our bright future, not just in healthcare, but in education, science and discovery, and in partnering to improve health across communities -- locally, nationally and globally.”

Nancy Andrews, MD, PhD, dean of the School of Medicine, lamented the fact that David Epstein, MD, chairman of the Department of Ophthalmology, didn’t see his vision of a new building come to fruition. Epstein, department chair for 22 years, died in March 2014.

“It is very sad he couldn’t be with us to see this wonderful building open,” Andrews said. “David was intense in his desire to treat and one day cure all vision-threatening and blinding diseases for people of all ages. He led the department new heights of accomplishment, consistently placing it among the very top departments nationally.”

“Today is the fulfillment of a dream that was started a decade ago,” said Edward Buckley, MD, chairman of the Department of Ophthalmology. “It began in 2002 with the vision of Dr. David Epstein. We are proud to elevate Duke’s promise to provide excellent, innovative, and compassionate eye care to people locally, nationally and globally. And we are just thrilled that this building will bear the name of Mr. William Hudson.”

Hudson is CEO of Durham-based LC Industries and chairman of the Duke Eye Center Advisory Board. LC Industries, the largest employer of visually impaired people in the country, donated $12 million for the building in 2010. It pledged an additional $4 million in 2013.

“We want to continue to be a part of the success taking place in this building,” Hudson said. “But at the end of the day, it’s only a building. The real beauty of this building is what is going to happen inside its walls. There is nowhere in this country that you can go and get the patient care with compassion that you get here. Everybody at this Eye Center cares about the patients.”

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