Although it seems that 2017 has just begun, a number of ground breaking issues are already impacting the Australasian eye care professions and we’ve covered them in this issue.
Of course the major news that broke earlier this year was the massive Essilor Luxottica merger, the largest in the history of global eye care. This has caused plenty of consternation and so, in an attempt to clarify things, we spoke to a number of industry leaders to gather their views. It seems that although the future is unclear, on the face of it, independent optometrists are not enamoured by the news.
According to Essilor and Luxottica it will be ‘business as usual’ for the foreseeable future, however regulatory bodies in various regions may deem such a large merger as anti-competitive or monopolistic. As usual with such things, only time will tell as to how the merger will impact the Australasian market.
Coming up in the world of eye care is the very important World Glaucoma Week 2017, from 12 – 18 March. To bring your attention to this disease, we’ve delved into the complexities of managing glaucoma in metro, regional and remote Australia for our lead story, Glaucoma Management: Overcoming the Challenges. As you’d expect, this story highlights the importance of efficient collaborative care.
According to Essilor and Luxottica it will be ‘business as usual’ for the foreseeable future
Our ophthalmology column this issue also focuses on glaucoma, with guest writers Drs. Simon Skalicky and Andrew White sharing their expertise on many of the latest diagnostic, treatment and management strategies.
Another important, yet more fun event for the Australian eye health sector is Silmo, which is coming to Australia for the first time. Silmo Sydney will take place in the all-new International Convention Centre at Darling Harbour from 9–11 March. Our fashion feature reveals the latest trends, equipment and educational opportunities you can expect to experience at the show.
Mivision’s education article this issue is focussed on orthokeratology used to re-shape the cornea. Ken Kopp shares his expertise on the history and evolution of orthokeratology, as well as advice on safe and effective fitting. Optometrist Jess Chi also writes about orthoK and the potential we have as eye care professionals to change lives by using this treatment to slow the progression of myopia.
As our long hot summer drifts into Autumn, it seems fitting to include a feature exploring Amniotek, a new procedure to tackle pterygium, believed to result from prolonged exposure to UV radiation from bright sunlight and dry, windy, dusty environments. Dr. Kerrie Meades spoke to us about using the procedure to remove the ptergium from an eye of her own clinic’s general manager.
In our second feature Melbourne optometrist Joe Wang, shares a heart-warming story on Eyes4Everest, which completed its third sight saving trip to Nepal in October 2016. Initiated in 2014 by Shaun Chang – who was inspired by his childhood hero Sir Edmund Hillary – Eyes4Everest is run by volunteers who provide much needed primary eye care to people in the Himalayas. Read all about it. It may inspire you to volunteer for such a life changing experience in the future.
I’m always inspired by the generosity of spirit I see among eye care professionals in Australia and New Zealand who so often freely offer their time and skills to provide eye care to those less fortunate in this world.