Organisers of O=MEGA19, from 19 –21 July in Melbourne, have said plans are well underway to deliver an international event that showcases the best in education, eye care, and eyewear. The inaugural O=MEGA19 will combine the most credentialed and largest annual optometry conference in the Southern Hemisphere with the largest eye care and eyewear show in Australia.
Pete Haydon, CEO of Optometry Victoria and Finola Carey CEO of the Optical Distributors and Manufacturers Association (ODMA), have described O=Mega19 as a “unifying event” and said it will offer something for everyone in eye health. It is expected to attract optometrists, optical dispensers, ophthalmologists, orthoptists, ophthalmic nurses, practice staff, other retailers (sunglasses), mechanics, technicians, and students.
The clinical conference at O=MEGA19 will be the strongest… for many years
Held in the new expansion at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, O=Mega19 promises a new format including lectures, sponsored sessions, team-based learning and small group workshops, a design junction fashion eyewear area, and a cocktail party on the Saturday night.
THREE DAYS OF CLINICAL EDUCATION
A dual stream clinical lecture program will run across the three day conference program, with a break on Saturday afternoon during which delegates will be able to visit the trade exhibition and attend a high energy interactive presentation on unusual cases, delivered by O=Mega19’s two international keynotes, Dr Danica Marrelli and Dr Jordan Keith.
Dr Marrelli, a clinical professor at University of Houston College of Optometry, serves as Assistant Dean of Clinical Education and staffs the glaucoma, retina, and general eye disease clinics. She is also secretary of the Optometric Glaucoma Society.
Dr Keith is at the Eye Care Center, a group optometry private practice in Minneapolis/ St Paul, Minnesota and is a Fellow of the American Academy of Optometry, a Diplomate of the American Board of Optometry, a member of the American Optometric Association, and serves as Chair of the Minnesota Optometric Association Education Committee.
“The clinical conference at O=MEGA19 will be the strongest presented in Australia for many years,” said Mr Haydon. “We’ve been very eager to get Dr Marrelli here for some time – her reputation is superb, and Dr Keith also comes highly recommended. We think they’ll be wonderful keynotes. We’re complementing these two speakers with the amazing talent we have available locally to produce a program worthy of this inaugural version of O=MEGA.”
Local optometrists confirmed to speak at O=Mega19 include Associate Professor Bang Bui, Dr Anne Weymouth, Professor Erica Fletcher, David Forresto, Rod Baker, Gavin O’Callaghan, Richard Lenny, and Katrina Yap. Ophthalmologists include Associate Professor Lyndell Lim who will speak on uveitis, strabismus specialist Dr Lionel Kowal who will speak on tropias, and Dr Georgia O’Cleary who will speak on corneal infection.
While the program is designed to allow delegates to dip in and out of lectures according to interest, it will be possible to acquire a total of 48 CPD points. A program of masterclasses is also being developed for practice managers and optical dispensers. Ms Carey said all the major Certificate IV in Dispensing providers including TAFE NSW, Australasian College of Optical Dispensing and RMIT had been invited to present the masterclasses, which will run alongside the clinical lecture series.
TRADE EXHIBITION ALMOST SOLD
O=Mega19 will feature a comprehensive trade exhibition covering 10,000m2 of exhibition space.
“The gamut of exhibitors is wide with Platinum sponsor Bausch & Lomb and Diamond sponsor Alcon being joined by loyal exhibitors of many years including BOC who have attended every single ODMAFair ever held,” said Ms Carey. “We welcome back Maui Jim to its biggest ever exhibition footprint and are pleased to have every category of product and service an eye care practitioner could require represented,” she said.
Exhibitors include Zeiss, De Rigo, Transitions, Aarons Eyewear, Shamir, Rodenstock, Rx Safety, Hoya, ProVision, Johnson & Johnson, BOC Instruments, Heidelberg Engineering, Eyecare Plus, JP Optical, Eye Candy Optics, ProOptics, Essilor, Designs for Vision, and AM Eyewear.
“O=MEGA19 is owned by the Australian optical industry and we look forward to being the only major event on the calendar. In our own annex of the MCEC, the optical industry will enjoy the biggest collegiate and convivial event ever held in the Southern Hemisphere,” Ms Carey said.