Published on January 26, 2021

North Mississippi Retina Center receives Gift from Schatz

Rhonda SchatzRhonda Schatz of Nettleton crocheted a special gift for occupational therapist Cheri Nipp, who provides Low Vision Rehabilitation at North Mississippi Retina Center.

Rhonda lost most of her vision in 2017 at age 59. “That really put me in a box,” Rhonda says. “My anxiety exploded. I hit a brick wall.” Suddenly, Rhonda could no longer cook, watch TV, do needlework, read books—all the things she enjoyed. Her doctor referred Rhonda to Cheri, who recommended new technology and strategies to improve her quality of life.

Cheri visited her at home, attaching Velcro dots or stickers to Rhonda’s microwave, washing machine, air fryer, TV remote and other items so she could feel the settings she needs even if she couldn’t see them.  She trained Rhonda to use a blood pressure cuff and blood sugar meter that “talk” so she can take care of herself. Cheri helped her get a magnifier that casts to her TV screen so Rhonda can read her mail and pay bills. She also introduced Rhonda to a headworn magnification device that uses a virtual reality headset with a cellphone as a camera.

As she regained her independence, Rhonda’s outlook improved. “People don’t realize how precious it is,” Rhonda says. “Cheri has helped me immensely. She has been an angel to me.” And now, Cheri has an angel of her own, handmade with love by a patient who didn’t know if she would be able to crochet—or do much else she enjoyed—ever again.

For more information about Low Vision Rehabilitation Services, visit www.nmhs.net/low-vision.

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