The Queen’s Birthday Honours were announced on 11 June:


Professor Robyn Heather GUYMER. VIC.

For significant service to medicine in the field of ophthalmology, particularly age related macular degeneration as a clinician, academic and researcher.

Dr Timothy Roger HENDERSON. NT.

For significant service to medicine in the field of ophthalmology, and to Indigenous eye health in the Northern Territory.

Professor Lawrence William HIRST. QLD.

For significant service to medicine in the field of ophthalmology through the development of clinical care techniques and eye disease management.


Dr Graeme Alfred POLLOCK. VIC.

For service to medical research, particularly to corneal transplantation.

Dr Sudarshan Kumar SACHDEV. NSW.

For service to the community, and to medicine, particularly to ophthalmology.

Ms Julienne TYERS. VIC.

For service to nursing, and to international eye-health programs.

By | June 11th, 2018|People|

ACOD graduates its first cohort of optical dispensers

The Australasian College of Optical Dispensers graduated its first cohort of optical dispensers at a function attended by 71 people in Sydney on 1 June, hosted by ACOD co-directors Messrs James Gibbins and Chedy Kalach.

There were 24 graduates from across Australia present out of the 56 in Australia and New Zealand who have completed the Certificate IV course in optical dispensing at ACOD.

By the time of a planned graduation function sponsored by the Association of Dispensing Opticians New Zealand in Auckland in October, it is expected there will be 30 course graduates in New Zealand.

Specsavers’ Katie Philp, dispensing advancement manager, welcomed the graduates and guests.

The ‘Student Experience’ address was given by Carly Clarke.

After the formal part of the function, the guests moved across to the Aquarium Wharf where they boarded for a harbour cruise for dinner and to view the lights of Vivid.

As the guests were disembarking at the wharf the fireworks of Vivid began to burst overhead, as a spectacular finale!

By | June 11th, 2018|Education|

Patient-question prompter launched by RANZCO and NZAO

The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Ophthalmologists and the New Zealand Association of Optometrists have jointly launched ‘The Choosing Wisely Patient Card,’ a patient-prompter, designed to encourage constructive questions from patients during eye-care consultations.

The prompter was launched at the RANZCO New Zealand Branch Annual Scientific Meeting by Nelson based ophthalmologist Dr Derek Sherwood. The RANZCO NZ Branch and the New Zealand Association of Optometrists have come together to create “an informative resource for patients receiving eye-health care”.
The patient card was developed by Choosing Wisely, an initiative which aims to reduce the use of unnecessary or unevidenced medical tests and procedures.

Choosing Wisely recognises that not all tests or procedures are helpful for all patients and therefore encourages constructive conversations between patients and health professionals in making decisions. The aim of the Choosing Wisely Patient Card is to help patients feel more comfortable and informed when having conversations with their eye-health care professional about their own eye care.
The patient card encourages patients to start an informed conversation by asking four “important” questions before undergoing eye-health tests:
• Why am I having this test?
• What information will it provide?
• What are the risks of the test?
• What happens if I don’t have the test?
“It is important that patients feel comfortable to ask

Read More >

By | June 11th, 2018|Education|

52,000 eye-injury cases admitted to hospital over 5-year period

Close to 52,000 people in Australia required an admission to hospital for treatment for eye injury between 2010-11 and 2014-15, according to a report released this month by the Australian Institute for Health and Welfare and Flinders University.

An open wound of the eyelid and periocular area (27%) was the most common principal diagnosis for eye-injury cases, followed by a fracture of orbital floor (18%).

Falls were the most common cause of eye injury, being responsible for just over one-third (35%) of cases. A fall-related eye injury most commonly occurred in those aged over 65 and was more frequently reported in women of this age group (72%) than in men (46%).

A further 23% of eye injuries were due to an assault, with this being the most common external cause reported for males (26%). Exposure to inanimate mechanical forces (20%) rounded out the top 3 external causes. This latter category includes, for example, injuries due to a foreign body entering the eye, or being struck in the orbital region by an object.

A total of 3,720 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people were hospitalised for an eye injury. During this 5-year period, assault-related eye injuries were more frequent for Indigenous Australians (61% or 2,270 cases) than for non-Indigenous Australians (20%, or 9,317 cases).

Sports-related eye

Read More >

By | June 11th, 2018|Misadventure|

US FDA approves artificial iris

The United States Food and Drug Administration has approved the first stand-alone prosthetic iris in the US, a surgically implanted device to treat adults and children whose iris is completely missing or damaged due to a congenital condition aniridia or other damage to the eye.

The device was developed by HumanOptics AG, a medical technology company based in Erlangen, Germany.
“Patients with iris defects may experience severe vision problems, as well as dissatisfaction with the appearance of their eye,” Dr Malvina Eydelman, MD, director of the division of Ophthalmic, and Ear, Nose and Throat Devices at the FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health, said.

‘Novel method to treat iris defects’

“Today’s approval of the first artificial iris provides a novel method to treat iris defects that reduces sensitivity to bright light and glare. It also improves the cosmetic appearance of the eye in patients with aniridia.”
Congenital aniridia is a rare genetic disorder in which the iris is completely or partially absent. It affects approximately 1 in 50,000 to 100,000 people in the US.

In addition to congenital aniridia, the CustomFlex Artificial Iris is indicated to treat iris defects due to other reasons or conditions, such as albinism, traumatic injury or surgical removal due to melanoma.
The artificial iris is made of thin, foldable medical-grade silicone and

Read More >

By | June 11th, 2018|Research Results|

New tool about testimonials to help advertisers ‘get it right’

A new tool to help practitioners and advertisers understand their obligations about using testimonials and reviews to advertise regulated health services is now available.

The testimonials tool is the latest in a series of resources and support materials developed by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency and National Boards to help health practitioners, health-care providers and other advertisers of regulated health services to comply with the National Law1.

The tool includes information and flow charts to help practitioners and advertisers understand why testimonials are not allowed and which reviews or feedback can be used in advertising.

Under section 133(1) of the National Law a person must not advertise a regulated health service, or a business that provides a regulated health service, in a way that uses testimonials or purported testimonials about the service or business.

In the context of the National Law, advertising includes any public communication that promotes a regulated health service such as all forms of printed and electronic media and a testimonial includes recommendations or statements about the clinical aspects of a regulated health service.

The chief executive officer of AHPRA, Mr Martin Fletcher, said advertising had changed dramatically in the last decade.

“Websites and social media have increasingly evolved into major marketing tools,” Mr Fletcher said.

“The National Boards and AHPRA recognise that these

Read More >

By | June 11th, 2018|Legal|