Commentry from Australia and New Zealand
I had a very interesting conversation recently with Cam Battaglia, the CEO of ProVision. We were talking about the state of the retail market and how tough conditions were generally. What Cam said surprised me.
He said that while many ProVision members were experiencing the same difficulties as the market generally, some were actually recording their best ever results. Yes, in the current market, they were achieving record results!
The topics covered will be those that members starting off on the therapeutics journey need to be across
The obvious follow-up question was – why? What is different? And this time perhaps an answer that wasn’t so surprising. Cam said that these were all, without fail, ProVision’s best-run practices.
The defining factor for all of these high achievers was that the principals committed the time and energy to ensure that every aspect of their practice was operating to the highest level. Note the key word – ‘every’.
Their retail presentation is first-class. Their stock buying is disciplined and planned. Staff are well-trained and rewarded for their efforts and achievements. Business systems enable the principals to keep a tight rein on expenses. They know what generates returns and what doesn’t.
So, does it sound appealing? Maybe organisations like ProVision or EyeCare Plus might just have something to offer you which could, if truly and enthusiastically embraced, offer real returns for your practice.
Could be time for another look, perhaps?
Professional Indemnity insurance is an important service provided for members through your OAA membership. Unfortunately we have seen an increase in claims against optometrists in recent years. To help you understand the insurance cover and to help make sure you are practicing as safely as possible we are working with Avant – the Association’s insurers – to provide an information and CPD session for members. The session will be held at our offices, 28 Drummond St Carlton on Wednesday 31 August from 6.30pm. There is no cost for the session which will look at the three top insurance claims areas and outline a series of tips for your day to day practice should you ever find yourself in the position of being sued by a patient.
If you are interested in Aviation Testing we will be running training in conjunction with the Civil Aviation and Safety Authority for members interested in becoming credentialed optometrists. The training will be in Melbourne on Thursday 22 and Friday 23 September and will be available to optometrists around the country. More information is available on our website – www.optometrists.asn.au – and you can contact our office to register.
We are delighted to see that many of our members have already achieved their annual requirement of 40 CPD points. Others have been on the phone with our office recently discussing options to make sure they have their points accrued well before the cut off date of 30 November. We are always happy to talk to members about CPD – in fact we are happy to talk to members about anything at all. If there is anything we can help you with call (AUS) 03 9652 9100 or email us at: [email protected]. We do love hearing
Finally, don’t forget, we continue to provide CPR courses for those yet to update their qualification. Check our website or contact the office for dates before the 30 November deadline.
Hoping to talk to you soon.
It’s that time of year when a member’s attention might turn to things political in terms of seeking election to the Board of the Queensland/Northern Territory Division. Soon members will receive information about nominating for any of the seven vacancies that occur each year on the Board. While there are eight directors roles, the Immediate Past President is automatically returned.
Our youthful Board includes Kate Johnson as President (Kate is also our representative on the OAA National Board), Kady Brandon as Vice-President, Nancy Atkinson as Treasurer, Immediate Past President Shannon Smith and Directors David Bradley, David Foresto, Jason Holland and Dr. Lindsay McGrath. As well, the Board boasts two observers who have political aspirations, namely Marissa Cassimatis and Emily Woodman, 2010 QUT graduate Drew Sherwin and current QUT School of Optometry student representative Wendy Saw. It is most likely that most of these individuals will seek re-election/election, guaranteeing a robust and highly visible election process.
This has been an exciting committee to work with/for, as they have taken on their sub-committee roles extremely seriously, most of which relate to being involved with external groups and events – for example General Practice Queensland, AMA Queensland, Diabetes Australia Queensland and the QUT School of Optometry.
The sub-committees and their members are Conduct – Jason Holland (Chair), Dr. Lindsay McGrath, Drew Sherwin and Shannon Smith; Education – Shannon Smith (Chair), Marissa Cassimatis, Jason Holland, Kate Johnson and Emily Woodman; Health Providers – Kady Brandon (Chair), Marissa Cassimatis, Dr Lindsay McGrath and Emily Woodman; Public Health – David Foresto (Chair), Nancy Atkinson, Marissa Cassimatis, Dr. Lindsay McGrath and Drew Sherwin; QUT Liaison – David Bradley (Chair), Jason Holland, Kate Johnson, Drew Sherwin and Emily Woodman.
In 2011/2012 it is likely that we will add the new committee; Media/Optometry Week Liaison. This committee will leverage opportunities under our arrangements with consulting firm BBS Public Relations.
Personally it has been a relief to me to know that there was always a volunteer to deliver a presentation to the various groups that require our services. Those groups include general practitioners, diabetes educators, patients with diabetes, schools etc. It is also important to note that many rank and file members also undertake these presentations on behalf of the division.
Nominations to the Board will be sought this month and must be back at Optometry House in September. If an election is required, it will be held in October and results announced at the Annual General Meeting on Saturday, 12 November.
Tasmanian Lifestyle Congress
Tasmanian optometrists are encouraged to enroll early for this year’s Tasmanian Lifestyle Congress (TLC VII) to avoid the disappointment of missing a place. A combination of an excellent array of speakers and the need for the mandatory 40 CPD points before registering by 30 November has led to unprecedented early interest. Assessment will take the form of multiple choice questions which can be completed any time in the two weeks following the lectures. We also hope to have a smartphone app that will allow tests to be taken immediately after each lecture. TLC takes place from Friday 26 to Sunday 28 August.
Once again this year, the European Eyewear Low Vision Seminar will be attached to the Tasmanian Lifestyle Congress. This year presenters include Dr. Peter Herse, Graham Sheil and Andrew Maver along with Rebecca Davis and Maryann O’Regan from the Tasmanian Lions Low Vision Clinic at the Royal Hobart Hospital.
There are very few, if any, specialist Low Vision conferences in Australia, and based on the experience of the last two years, the quality of the education provided in Hobart is very high. Don’t miss out on being there!
Download the full program and registration form for TLC VII at www.optometrists.asn.au/TLC/tabid/807/language/en-US/Default.aspx
Contribute to our 100 year History
In 2013, regulated optometry will have served Tasmanians for 100 years. To celebrate, the board has entrusted Executive Officer, Keith Mackriell with producing a history of optometry in Tasmania. It will stand as a record of achievement and as a tribute to the commitment, persistence, skills and dedication of those who, for 100 years, have sought so successfully to advance their profession on behalf of their patients.
We welcome member contributions and invite you to contact Keith Mackriell to discuss your ideas.
520 patrons recently took advantage of the free eye health and vision screening provided by volunteer optometrists at this year’s Agfest. Anecdotal evidence suggests that a vast number of those participating in the screenings had either never had an eye test, or not had one recently. A number of conditions were ‘picked up’.
Familiarise Yourself with CPD
All optometrists need to complete a minimum of 40 CPD points per calendar year. Those who are registered with therapeutic endorsement need to ensure that a minimum of 20 points out of the 40 are related to the therapeutic endorsement. There is further clarification as to how many of these points can be earned from suppliers and manufacturers, non-clinical activities and a minimum that need to be face to face. Visit www.optometryboard.gov.au/CPDaspx to ensure the events you have planned to attend will meet the necessary requirements.
National Office is building a database of members who are willing to be spokespersons for the Association when a local optometrist or a member with a particular interest or expertise is required. If you would like to volunteer, please let me know.
The program for WAVE 2011 is now out and it has been exceptionally well received. Registrations are flooding in and we’re looking forward to another great conference here in Western Australia.
WAVE is one of the last chances to acquire all your CPD points before registration with the Optometry Board of Australia is due in November. We’ve got 42 points available to attendees – 22 points on Saturday and 20 on Sunday.
It’s important to realise that this year we will have a strong focus on therapeutics as a part of the education programme. The topics covered will be those that members starting off on the therapeutics journey need to be across – which will be especially valuable now that the Western Australia profession is up and running with this aspect of optometry.
Workshops and Lectures
Once again, our clinical workshops and lectures are proving to be popular with delegates. For the first time in the events format, the Saturday program will be repeated in part both for the Clinical Workshops and Lectures of the conference. Doing so provides flexibility and helps members optimise their time at WAVE. It also enables us to keep attendee numbers at a size that encourages participation and attendance with an even spread across the event – a CPD education feature that WAVE has become renowned for. Another feature that differentiates our program from others is the use of short, sharp lectures with presentations lasting either 15 or 30 minutes. This keeps the conference program alive and interesting, while enabling us to cover off myriad topics in just two days… maximising learning for delegates is a priority within the programme.
For the first time, our program will feature Roman Serebrianik, a Lead Optometrist – Primary Care at the Australian College of Optometry (ACO). Throughout Saturday, Roman will present clinical workshops entitled: ‘Why am I crying? – Common disorders of the lacrimal system and their management’. This 45-minute workshop will provide much needed therapeutic points for members who attend.
Returning by popular demand, having debuted at WAVE in 2008, is Queensland optometrist David Foresto. David will speak on the ‘Optometrist’s role in corneal graft rejection.’ Additionally David will present lectures on ‘Managing and recognising side effects of ocular therapeutics’ and ‘Treating Allergic eye disease: the pathogenesis of allergic eye disease, diagnosis, current and upcoming treatments’. His presentations also have therapeutics points attached.
Another well known and popular speaker with the WA profession presenting at WAVE 2011 is Tasmanian optometrist Daryl Guest. Daryl, who is renowned for his entertaining style and energy, will speak on ‘Neurological disorders that you are likely to see’ and close the conference on Sunday afternoon with an engaging presentation on ‘Viral disease and corneas’.
AMO will sponsor our traditional Sunday morning working breakfast – ensuring all attendees have a great start to the day of lectures and learning.
With a fantastic line up of almost 40 exhibitors there will also be plenty to discover and see at The WAVE Trade Exhibition – including ophthalmic equipment, frames, contact lenses and other related technologies. No less than six new exhibitors will be on display for the first time, making this the largest WAVE Trade Show so far.
You can get full details on the program buy visiting www.optometrists.asn.au and clicking on the links. Alternatively, call us in the office in Western Australia on (AUS) 08 9321 2300. But please remember, with WAVE just around the corner now, you need to get your registration forms in, along with your session preferences, as soon as possible to ensure you have a place.