Icon Sprite

History of Our Practice

The history of our practice spans decades of providing patients with excellent vision correction treatments and general eye care.

A Legacy of Excellence

an eye and eye chart

When looking at each one of North Shore Eye Care’s 13 laser vision correction centers in Long Island, it is hard to imagine that what is now globally recognized as a laser eye surgery powerhouse and innovator in surgical techniques began over 50 years ago in the modest Smithtown apartment of Sidney Martin and his wife.

Video: Dr. Sidney Martin

Dr. Sidney Martin, our founder, started North Shore Eye Care in 1963 and practiced ophthalmology in Smithtown for over 40 years. His son, Dr. Jeffrey Martin describes the warm and compassionate man that his father is. He discusses the great lengths their practice will go to provide care for their patients.

How it All Began

Dr. Sidney MartinDr. Sidney Martin, a New York native, and his West Virginia raised wife met in Baltimore while he was an ophthalmology resident and she was studying nursing. The two married at a time where medical offices were owned and operated out of people’s homes and most doctors were general physicians, not specialists like Dr. Martin. Once the couple settled in Smithtown in 1962, they felt it fitting to birth and nurture an ophthalmology practice out of the front room of their apartment. From that moment on the practice flourished. Martin’s wife was his only employee, at that time, managing administration and front desk responsibilities. The couple charged ten dollars for a patient’s first eye exam and five dollars for every other visit thereafter.

Dr. Sidney Martin was truly invested in the lives of his patients and provided them with the comprehensive care they needed and couldn’t find anywhere else. He made himself available to them, day and night, and would often greet patients at his front door at three o’clock in the morning, all the while still wearing his slippers and a smile on his face. His patients knew they could depend on him to relieve their pain, diagnose their eye conditions, and assure them everything would be okay.

The Growth of the Practice

Within the years to come, Martin and his wife moved into a small ranch style home, where he continued to practice out of a garage he converted into a private office. It wasn’t until the 70’s when the humble eye care specialist decided to move his practice into a building of its own. With the expansion of his facility came even more growth within his practice. Dr. Martin’s focus remained on his patients and family and providing exceptional care to his community. Martin was performing surgeries on patients and skillfully placing stitches before eye surgery and the eye care industry began developing. Standing on the forefront of eye surgery and watching the revolution of eye care unfold; Dr. Martin felt it fitting to welcome another specialist to his practice.

In 1977 Dr. Lawrence Zweibel joined North Shore Eye Care and helped to integrate new technology, techniques, and services into the practice. By evolving the practice Drs. Martin and Zweibel were able to see the value of innovation and the difference it made in the betterment of patient results. For the next twenty years, the two eye care specialists made a difference in the lives of patients in their Smithtown community, by improving the quality of their vision.

It wasn’t until Dr. Martin’s son, Dr. Jeffrey Martin, joined the practice in 1997 that the eye care facility moved, once again. The young, highly educated son of Sidney Martin convinced the surgeons to settle the practice in a much larger office. Now, they were able to provide services out of six rooms and began performing LASIK, laser vision correction surgery, which meant their Long Island team was on the forefront of the life-changing treatment.  Jeffrey Martin began treating some of his father’s patients, who had been coming to the practice to see Sidney Martin since before his son was even born.

50 Years
Of Service
to Long Island Residents North Shore Eye Care was founded by Dr. Sidney Martin in 1962

Since 2009 the North Shore team and practice has grown exponentially. The vision that Dr. Zweibel had for growing and developing the practice fit perfectly in line with the direction Drs. Martin and Martin had hoped their practice would take. What was once a mere dream to rapidly expand the practice, its name, and its reputation had finally come into fruition.  If it hadn't been for Dr. Sidney Martin’s dedication to his patients, his will for his eye care center to succeed, and his devotion to welcoming innovation into his practice, the center would have never reached this degree of patient and surgical success.

A Continued Dedication to Building Relationships for Life

With a constant goal to continue to grow the practice, add providers to its network, and become an excellent outlet for all subsets of ophthalmology, the doctors at North Shore Eye Care continue to innovate and welcome a wider range of patients into the practice. Being the official LASIK provider of the New York Mets as well being voted “Best Eye Care on Long Island” in 2014, 2015 & 2016, speaks volumes about the center’s dedication to the members of its community and the degree of care it provides. The practice is always exploring new ways to connect with its existing and future patients and promote the charitable organizations and cultural efforts that are made within the community. In fact, the surgeons at North Shore Eye Care lead a symposium for more than 150 attendees twice a year, educating young eye care professionals about the latest advances in vision care and how past professional experiences have tailored the way the doctors approach their patients.