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Our Doctors and Staff

Stewart VanHorn, MD

Stewart VanHorn, MD

Dr. Stewart VanHorn is a Board certified ophthalmologist with clinical, surgical and refractive surgery experience. He completed his residency in ophthalmology at the UCLA Jules Stein Institute and then completed a fellowship in refractive and corneal surgery at the Sinsky Eye Institute in California prior to joining the Laurel Eye Clinic in 2000.

Dr. VanHorn specializes in cataract and refractive (vision correction) surgery. Dr. VanHorn sees patients in our Altoona, Bedford, Clearfield and Johnstown offices and will be performing cataract surgery, glaucoma surgery and LASIK in the Altoona Laurel Laser & Surgery Center location while also performing cataract and glaucoma surgery in the Brookville Laurel Laser & Surgery Center.

Dr. VanHorn is honored to have participated in surgical ophthalmology mission work abroad. In his most recent trip, Dr. Van Horn spent about 10 days at the University of Gondar hospital where he trained doctors on performing phacoemulsification. He performed around 20 surgeries himself while doctors watched as part of his teaching process. Following his time in Gondar, Dr. VanHorn attended the Robert M. Sinskey Pediatric Eyecare Clinic in Addis Ababa on behalf of ASCRS where he treated adult patients.

Dr. VanHorn is a member of the Pennsylvania Medical Society and the Blair County Medical Society.

Under of direction of Dr. VanHorn, the Laurel Laser & Surgery Center in Duncansville reached their 10,000th cataract removal milestone in 2013, just six years after the facility opened.

Deepika Malik, MD

Stewart VanHorn, MD

Deepika Malik, MD, Chairman of Retina Services at the Laurel Eye Clinic, is a fellowship trained Vitreoretinal Specialist with over 10 years of medical and surgical retina experience. She is a leader in diagnosing and treating patients with retinal disorders.

Dr. Malik has completed her surgical fellowship in vitreous and retina diseases at Gavin Herbert Eye institute, University of California, Irvine. She has completed externships at Truhlsen Eye Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center and Midwest Eye Care in Omaha, Nebraska. While at the Gavin Herbert Eye Institute, University of California, Irvine, Dr. Malik was a Clinical Instructor for the Vitreous and Retina Surgical Fellowship Program. The goals of this program were to further develop up-to-date surgical techniques and she served as a mentor for the American surgical fellows.

Dr. Malik is a member of the Pennsylvania Medical Society, the Jefferson County Medical Society, American Society of Retina Specialists (ASRS), the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO), the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO), Pennsylvania Medical Society, American Medical Association (AMA), the Vitreo-retina Society of India (VRSI), and the All-India Ophthalmological Society (AIOS).

Dr. Malik has participated in multicenter national clinical trials evaluating new drugs and devices for the treatment of diabetic retinopathy, retinal vein occlusions and age-related macular degeneration. Her primary area of research is the role of mitochondrial genetics in the pathogenesis of retinal conditions, such as age-related macular degeneration and diabetic retinopathy. She has also extensively researched on safety profiles of anti-VEGF drugs that are available for use in the treatment of age-related macular degeneration. Her research work has been published in internationally recognized journals - British Journal of Ophthalmology, PLOS One and Human Molecular Genetics.

Dr. Malik is honored to have participated in surgical mission work in India. She has previously served in collaboration with various organizations - Samvedana eye care project, for diabetes, World Diabetes Foundation, ORBIS, Vision 2020, and National Programme for Control of Blindness. She has provided cataract and retinal surgical services to patients in underserved communities.

Dr. Malik is accepting appointments in our Brookville, DuBois, Grove City and Duncansville locations. She is performing retina surgeries in our Brookville and Altoona Surgery Centers.

Andrew Batchelet, MD

Stewart VanHorn, MD

Dr. Batchelet graduated from Penn State University with a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry & Molecular Biology. He then received his medical degree from the University of Virginia School of Medicine. He completed his internship at UPMC Mercy and his Ophthalmology residency at Wills Eye Institute in Philadelphia. 

Dr. Batchelet is a comprehensive ophthalmologist, trained in a wide range of diagnostic and surgical interventions. He performs advanced cataract and anterior segment surgery, LASIK, micro-invasive glaucoma surgery, and a wide array of laser procedures to enhance vision and treat glaucoma. He acquired special training in modern developing world surgical care while on a medical mission trip to Peru.  

In 2016, Dr. Batchelet was named one of the top 40 physicians under the age of 40 in the State of Pennsylvania for his skill as a surgeon and patient-centered care.

Dr. Batchelet is a member of the Pennsylvania Medical Society and the Allegheny County Medical Society. He is board certified by the American Board of Ophthalmology. Dr. Batchelet is available for appointments at the Laurel Eye Clinic Grove City, Seneca and Brookville locations.

Jeffrey L. Bezier, MD

Jeffrey L. Bezier, MD

Jeffrey L. Bezier, MD, is a board-certified ophthalmologist. Dr. Bezier completed his undergraduate work at Princeton University, where he graduated summa cum laude. He also was awarded a four year Army ROTC scholarship while there. Dr. Bezier received his medical degree from the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. While there, he was also a member of the school's Rugby Club.  He later completed his internship at Bryn Mawr Hospital and his residency in Ophthalmology at the renowned Wills Eye Hospital in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Dr. Bezier will be seeing patients on an ongoing basis in Brookville, Grove City, Seneca and Altoona where he will be doing laser treatments, retinal injections and glaucoma management. Dr. Bezier has practiced ophthalmology in Western Pennsylvania for more than twenty-three years


Thierry Verstraeten , MD

Thierry Verstraeten, MD, is a board certified specialist, who manages the care of patients with retinal diseases or are in need of retinal surgery. Dr. Verstraeten is an Assistant Professor of Ophthalmology at Drexel University College of Medicine, Allegheny General Hospital Campus. Since 1995, Dr. Verstraeten has worked as a Clinical Assistant Professor of Ophthalmology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. He has been board certified by the American Board of Ophthalmology since 1991. Dr. Verstraeten has an extensive background in teaching, writing and caring for patients with retinal disease.

Dr. Verstraeten will perform surgery at the Laurel Laser & Surgery Center in Brookville, as well as at Allegheny General Hospital.

Pradeepa Yoganathan, MD

Pradeepa Yognathan, MD, is a board certified specialist, who manages the care of patients with retinal disease or are in need of retinal surgery. Dr. Yoganathan has served as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Ophthalmology at the University of Buffalo, where she served as the Director of the Ross Eye Institute at the University of Buffalo until 2015. Additionally, she worked as a retina associate at North Toronto Eye Care performing care for patients with retinal disease and doing retinal surgery.  Dr. Yoganathan has significant experience in teaching, publishing articles and journals on retinal disease.  Dr. Yoganathan is well known nationally as a speaker, presenter, and reviewer of retina journals.  She has also been involved in researching retinal disease and evaluating treatment of the same.  Dr. Yoganathan has been certified by the American Board of Ophthalmology since 2010.  Dr. Yoganathan is on staff at Allegheny General Hospital in Pittsburgh.  In addition to AGH, she will be performing retinal surgery at the Laurel Laser & Surgery Center in Brookville.


Algie LaBrasca, DO

Stewart VanHorn, MD

Algie LaBrasca, DO, a native of DuBois, PA, earned his Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine from Touro University College of Osteopathic Medice in Mare Islande, Vallejo, CA and completed his general surgery residency at Memorial Hospital in York, PA. He completed a plastic and reconstructive surgery fellowship at the Henry Ford Health System in Detroit, MI, with additional, extensive training at the Detroit Medical Centor and Botsford Hospital. Dr LaBrasca is Board Certified in Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery through the American Osteopathic Board of Surgery.

Dr. LaBrasca is a member of the Pennsylvania Medical Society and the Jefferson County Medical Society.