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Wednesday / May 22.
HomeminewsVic Eye Hospital a World Leader

Vic Eye Hospital a World Leader

The Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital has been acknowledged by world leading specialist eye hospitals as an international leader at the Annual Meeting of the World Association of Eye Hospitals (WAEH) held in Melbourne earlier this year.

The hospital was given the accolade for its national and international leadership role in eye health, treatment and research.

Chief Executive Officer of The Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital Ann Clark said the WAEH conference came at an important time for Eye and Ear health and was a testimony to the hospital’s standing in the international eye health community that it was chosen as a host.

“In 2004, vision disorders cost Australia AUD$9.85 billion. That cost is predicted to more than double by 2020. This conference tackled the challenges of innovation in eye care and we are honoured that Melbourne was chosen to host this meeting,” Ms. Clark said.

“This year’s discussions were very relevant to the challenges that face the Eye and Ear as we move forward in the short term to plan for redevelopment and the excitement of the first implantation of the Bionic Eye anticipated in 2013.”

“This conference enabled world eye health leaders to share ideas and build collaborations with colleagues from around the World. The free exchange of information and sharing of knowledge was beneficial to all.”

More than 40 delegates, including experts and eye hospital CEOs presented on the latest innovations in how eye health care services are delivered and benefited from the opportunity to learn from their peers from countries including USA, United Kingdom, Europe, Asia and Australia. Forums were held on the “Challenges of Innovation in Eye Care” including:

  • The Bionic Eye
  • The rapid expansion of medical knowledge
  • The future of communication technology on healthcare
  • Innovations in healthcare processes
  • Renovations or rebuilding of eye hospitals world wide and
  • International cooperation opportunities

The opportunity for international benchmarking of specialist eye hospitals to identify and share best practise and measure trends, improvements and innovations was one of the key outcomes of the conference.

The Eye and Ear Hospital’s new strategic direction to expand their hub and spoke model is international best practice as the model is in successful operation in the UK, USA and Europe.

Open discussions at the WAEH meeting allowed each hospital to share and learn how to better improve patient-centred communications, particularly around fear reduction.

Other discussions included the international exchange of staff which examined the need for different workforce models including the roles of orthoptists, optometrists and nurses.

Exciting new research underdevelopment was of interest to all including the bionic eye, treatment for dry AMD, corneal stem cell therapy and retinal scar reduction.

“The overview of different health systems internationally demonstrated that different environments may drive development of different approaches but ultimately we are all treating the same types of patients and eye problems,” said Ms. Clark.