UCSF Unveils New Home for Renowned Ophthalmology Programs 

New Vision Center at Mission Bay Offers World-Class Resource for Community 

By Kristen Bole

exterior of the UCSF Wayne and Gladys Valley Center for Vision building

The new UCSF Wayne and Gladys Valley Center for Vision will include a home for the leading eye doctors and surgeons, scientists and laboratory facilities as well as a 12-story tower that will include administrative and conference space for UCSF faculty and staff.

UC San Francisco has brought its renowned vision care and research under one roof with the opening of the UCSF Wayne and Gladys Valley Center for Vision on Nov. 9, 2020. 

Located at the corner of Third and 16th streets in San Francisco, across from the UCSF Medical Center at Mission Bay to the west and the Chase Center to the north, the new Valley Center for Vision is home to leading eye doctors and surgeons, scientists and laboratory facilities, and will serve the community through an estimated 160,000 patient visits each year. 

“The new Center is designed to support all of the pillars of our mission: research, teaching, clinical care and service with state-of-the-art facilities,” said Stephen McLeod, MD, Theresa M. and Wayne M. Caygill, MD, Distinguished Professor and chair of ophthalmology at UCSF. “It will bring together scientists across multiple disciplines whose work converges on vision and eye health, along with clinician-scientists who are committed to leading-edge patient care.” 

The UCSF Department of Ophthalmology has the top-ranked eye program in Northern California, according to U.S. News & World Report, and is among the top academic medical centers in research funding from the National Eye Institute. Its innovations have shaped the field, from fundamental discoveries in visual perception to the development of modern cataract surgery implants, to benefit the estimated 285 million people worldwide who are visually impaired. 

With more than 40,000 square feet of clinic space, 70 patient visit rooms and the best diagnostic and therapeutic tools, the Valley Center for Vision significantly expands UCSF Health’s ability to provide state-of-the art ophthalmology services.  

Its ophthalmology and optometry clinic will provide routine vision care and comprehensive vision exams for adults, as well as specialty care for complex eye conditions, including cataracts, ocular cancer, glaucoma, diabetic eye disease, ocular inflammation, macular degeneration and eye injuries. It will offer both cataract and lens surgeries, as well as laser eye surgery in its LASIK and cosmetic surgery procedure center. 

The new Valley Center for Vision also includes the Francis I. Proctor Foundation, which is dedicated to research and training in infectious and inflammatory ocular diseases, and works to eradicate blindness worldwide, especially in low-income countries. 

Housing much of UCSF’s vision-related work under one roof on the same campus as its basic scientists will foster the cross-fertilization necessary to advance research and care, and will connect the department’s researchers to Mission Bay’s larger biotechnology and neuroscience hubs, McLeod said. The center also will enhance the university’s ability to recruit and train the next generation of leaders in the field. 

“What most excites us is the opportunity to bring so much talent within the UCSF community and so many resources together to address the most challenging issues of eye health and visual disability,” McLeod said. “We believe that this really will allow UCSF to lead the way in the discovery of exciting new therapies.” 

The new facility was made possible by fundraising by the nonprofit foundation That Man May See, which was established almost 50 years ago to support the goal of UCSF ophthalmology, to save and restore sight for present and future generations. UCSF expresses its deepest gratitude to lead funder, the Wayne and Gladys Valley Foundation, and to Theresa M. Caygill, and the Koret Foundation, for the generous support that launched the effort to build a new home for UCSF ophthalmology. 

“We are tremendously thankful for the major outpouring of generosity from our donors, grateful patients and the University, who are all helping us reach this milestone to fund our beautiful new home,” said That Man May See chair John F. de Benedetti, who has been blind since the age of 11 and has received care at UCSF for many years. “The new building is a tangible example of That Man May See’s passion and commitment to our cause.” 

The Koret Foundation is committed to strengthening the Bay Area and is a major supporter of local educational, cultural, Jewish, and community organizations, including the UCSF Department of Ophthalmology for nearly 40 years. 

“Koret looks for leading institutions to help elevate the quality of life in the Bay Area, especially for the most vulnerable among us,” said Jeffrey Farber, Koret Foundation CEO. “By supporting this world-class facility, programs and faculty, we are helping to advance the field of vision medicine while ensuring quality care for those with complex sight challenges. Improving access to research-informed care is a commitment we’re proud to make.” 

The adjacent 12-story tower will include administrative and conference space for UCSF faculty and staff from multiple sites, including Parnassus, Mission Center, Mission Bay, Laurel Heights and other leased spaces.   

UCSF Health is recognized worldwide for its innovative patient care, reflecting the latest medical knowledge, advanced technologies and pioneering research. It includes the flagship UCSF Medical Center, which is ranked among the top 10 hospitals nationwide, as well as UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals, with campuses in San Francisco and Oakland, Langley Porter Psychiatric Hospital and Clinics, UCSF Benioff Children’s Physicians and the UCSF Faculty Practice. These hospitals serve as the academic medical center of the University of California, San Francisco, which is world-renowned for its graduate-level health sciences education and biomedical research. UCSF Health has affiliations with hospitals and health organizations throughout the Bay Area.