Lifelong myopia is hard but the skills of the late Dr Franz Preziosi in my childhood and Dr Mario Tabone since adolescence made it so much easier, especially when Dr Tabone suggested soft lenses to me way back in the late 1970s.

Only last Wednesday evening, I was suggesting that this altruistic octogenarian could somehow still go out of his way and visit a woman with impaired vision whose mobility was restricted following recent surgery.

Though he was so clinical to manage a fresh retinal tear I had 19 years ago, it is not his abilities as an ophthalmic surgeon that encouraged me to write. Nor his having so much knowledge from reading widely, though this enchanted me so much.

I am writing to appreciate his bedside manners, his ability to communicate. Busy as he was, patients confirm he would talk with them about their family, job or special interests.

I for one remain mostly standing when dealing with patients. He would sit. Sitting is a small action that can help put your patients at ease and make a difference in their experience.

He would speak professionally and accurately, but in a way the patient can understand, particularly with the help of images hanging on the clinic walls.

Avoiding medical jargon and technical terms, he would convey information in a manner that any patient can comprehend.

My hometown Floriana has been, and still is, so privileged to host clinics of the ‘crème de la crème’ of ophthalmology here. Harley Street London comes to mind. But though private, much more affordable here.

In my humble opinion, Floriana local council should name streets after these two ophthalmologists, not to mention other medical personalities who served from Floriana for decades.

My deepest sympathy to his family, friends and patients.

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