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Opchat Magazine Exhibition and Training pagesExhibition and Education News, July to September 2018


SILMO 2018 announces Nominees for the 25th Silmo D'Or awards.
Wolffsohn and Black lecture at RSM to Primary Care and General Practice members.
Julian Jackson wows GPs and Primary Care workers at their annual section dinner at the RSM.
MYOPIA EDUCATION PROGRAM: "MANAGING MYOPIA" to re-run plus Complex Cases Course to run soon.
ABDO and WOPEC collaboration a great success for participants
The iDay Conference announces programme for 2018
Frames, frames and more new frames, only at 100% Optical
WOPEC launches Optical Assistant course
Educationalists, Eyecare; become new sponsors on Opchat News.
Specsavers deliver Certificate in Medical Retina to upgrade enhanced optical services.
ABDO's exam glitch found out.
PHN continues co-media relationship with Advanced Eye Care 2019 for second year.
100% reports heightened activity in stand bookings for 2019
ABDO College announces new Courses Coordinator for Optical Support Programmes.
New Year, and a New Vision With 100% Optical in 2019.
Positive Impact celebrate launch of new Specialist Club
SILMO Bangkok 2018
Ground breaking research to be presented at premier OCT imaging conference
Read archived stories from April to June 2018 first quarter.

SILMO 2018 announces Nominees for the 25th Silmo D'Or awards.

September 2018

Prof James Wolffsohn
Are you taking the Euro to SILMO 2018 starting the 28th September, just over 2 weeks away?

SILMO positioned now closer to Charles de Gaulle Airport at the Parc des Expositions is still an eye opening exhibition almost where East meets West in optical product terms.

Opchat News will be there to report on this year's show and hopefully given good weather to take in the sounds and sights of Paris. If you are going and there's still time to book then check out the Silmo D'Or nominees.

Nominated Brands for 25th Silmo D’Or


OBE with « Rivet & Brand » Hall 5 J 006
GÖTTI Switzerland with « Götti Perspective PS06 » Hall 5 A 139
L’AMY with « McLaren Ultimate Vision » Hall 6 H 082
NETOPTIC with MALT « Serre-Cercle intégré » Hall 5 B 095
SPECIAL’EYES with « Dark Hole » Hall 5 E 042


COGAN with « Zoobug Panda » Hall 5 H 019
JEAN-FRANÇOIS REY with « Boréal 3020 » Hall 5 K 107
MINIMA with « Minima BB Hybrid 1 » Hall 5 P 060
OPAL with « Tartine & Chocolat TC AA327» Hall 6 B 011
URBAND with « Eyelet Active » Hall 5 P 134


LONGCHAMP with « LO2109 » MARCHON Hall 6 B 089
MARNI with « ME 2623 » MARCHON Hall 6 B 089
MAUBOUSSIN with « MAU1808 » ADCL Hall 6 F 074
ROUSSILHE with Bonnie « Lumineuse » Hall 5 P 108


ELEVEN PARIS with « EP AS052 » OPAL Hall 6 B 011
LONGCHAMP with « LO623S » MARCHON Hall 6 B 089
MAJE with « MJ7007 » MONDOTTICA Hall 6 B 067
VON ARKEL Switzerland with « Calibre 4 » Hall 5 M 089


BBGR Optique with «BLUV Xpert » Hall 6 C 039
DIVEL Italia with « IR BLOCK » Hall 5 J 006
ESSILOR with « Crizal® Sapphire+™» Hall 6 J 105
NIKON with « SeeCoat Bright UV » Hall 6 B 039
ZEISS with « UV Protect » Hall 5 H 032


ACCESS France Sécurité & RFID with «ID Robot 2.0 » Hall 6 F 126
ESSILOR with « Vision R-800 » Hall 6 J 105
NIDEK with « Téléréfraction » Hall 5 P 054


BLAKE KUWAHARA with « Johnson » Hall 5 C 140
HENAU with « Koga » Hall 5 F 059
MORÀ BUSOLI with « Venti » Hall 5 N 082
PIERRE Eyewear with « New York » Hall 5 K 101
YOHJI YAMAMOTO with « YY3021 » BRANDO Hall 5 E 139


FACTORY 900 & ELZA WINKLER with «EL-002» Hall 5 F 142
IMPRESSIO with « Impressio 609 Vortex » Hall 5 HJ 149
NINA MÛR with « Nathalie Bacterio » Hall 5 K 072
PIERO MASSARO with « PM 362 » Hall 5 H 161
VAVA EYEWEAR with « CL0008 » Hall 5 H 162

Wolffsohn and Black lecture at RSM to Primary Care and General Practice members.

September 2018

Prof James WolffsohnOptical sector leaders played a part in providing education to over 85 primary care and general practice workers at the RSM.

Each year the RSM hosts a three-day event providing cpd/cet with a broad range of subjects, the event being named Primary Care Update to reflect the diversity of the section.

During an afternoon designed to highlight the importance of working together Professor James Wolffsohn (right) and Peter Black provide lectures on Understanding Dry Eye and on improving working with and understanding Sight Loss, respectively.

Both lectures were very well received with a considerable interest shown by the many questions on Dry Eye.

The lectures were followed by awards and presentations of the John Horder prize which is dedicated to primary care teams and individuals who can show how working in a multidisciplinary team in primary care setting can have a major impact on healthcare. The award is made every year and is a perfect vehicle for one of our specialists MECS enhanced services providing teams.

The President of the RSM Section and Chair for the day, Bob Hutchinson, well known to the optical sector and our readers thanked both speakers and reminded the audience of the importance of working as teams to share the burden of the ever increasing demographic health challenges in the UK.

The John Horder Prize is open to non members as well as members of the RSM and awarded annually.

“I would really like to see a growth of associate members and fellows at the RSM to join my section from Optoms, CLOs and Dispesning Opticians.. You can be a member of others sections as well like the Ophthalmology section, but the General Practice with Primary Healthcare section is the broadest based with GPs, practice managers, therapists, pharmacists, nurses and nutritionists and opticians to name just a few. “Said Hutchinson. Soon to finish the first of his two year office as President.

Take a look at the RSM website here

Julian Jackson wows GPs and Primary Care workers at their annual section dinner at the RSM.

September 2018

Julian Jackson
Following his successful challenge of the Big Blind Walk this year walking from Land’s End to John O’Groats Julian explained his passion to improve the flow of money into eye research.

Julian went blind through Retinitis Pigmentosa some years ago but has worked tirelessly for the blind community with his Vision Bridge Charity. Less than 1% of vision charity money goes to research in this area and yet there is so much more that can be achieved by new discoveries.

Julian told fascinating stories about his Big Blind Walk to an audience of GPs and Primary Care members of the section last Wednesday.

He also gave prior notice of his next expedition in 2020 involving cycling around the coast of Britain. The keenest of you will be able to buy a seat on his tandem for part of the way. “The front one!”, said Julian “in case you were wondering”

MYOPIA EDUCATION PROGRAM: "MANAGING MYOPIA" to re-run plus Complex Cases Course to run soon.

September 2018

Myopia control
The Brien Holden Vision Institute Academy will launch a new myopia management course, ‘Complex Cases’, in November 2018. It will follow the original ‘Managing Myopia’ course, which, due to popular demand, will run again in October 2018.

The online courses are accredited for continuing education points by COPE, the General Optical Council (GOC), Optometry Australia (OA), the Optometrists and Dispensing Opticians Board (ODOB) and the Optometristen Vereniging Nederland (OVN), for practitioners across North America, Europe and Asia Pacific.

“The new course is a natural progression for practitioners who have completed the ‘Managing Myopia’ course”, says Judith Stern, Global Manager of Education for Brien Holden Vision Institute Academy. “It will provide practitioners with the tools and strategies to feel confident in handling more complex cases.”

“Patient factors outside the scope of accessible evidence, treating a patient for more than one condition at a time, poorer than expected outcomes with management strategies, or factors that are not yet understood, may all challenge a practitioner’s ability to manage a case effectively.”

The self-paced, independent learning courses utilises interactive case studies where practitioners are guided through cases using polls, questions and videos from global leaders.
Course one, ‘Managing Myopia’, is a revolutionary, patient focused course based on the latest advances in research that will change the way optometrists understand myopia. It will help identify candidates at risk and empower optometrists with the skills to better manage progressive myopia for patients.

Ninety eight percent of participants who completed course one, ‘Managing Myopia’, said that they changed the way they manage myopia in practice after completing the course.

Ninety percent said they would recommend the course to colleagues and eighty five percent said they were interested in course two, ‘Complex Cases’. The Myopia Education Program is available in both English and Spanish (course one only). Early bird enrolments are now open, however, intakes are limited and must close 18 September 2018. Further discount is applied if both courses are purchased together. To find out more or register go to:

ABDO and WOPEC collaboration a great success for participants

September 2018

On the 29th August, the Association of British Dispensing Opticians (ABDO) in collaboration with WOPEC held the inaugural Objective Structured Clinical Examination in Minor Eye Condition Services (MECS) and Goldmann Applanation Tonometry for Contact Lens Opticians, at the ABDO National Resource Centre. ABDO is delighted to report that all 22 participating successfully passed.

Commenting on this success, ABDO Deputy Chief Executive Barry Duncan says, “Clearly this reflects well on the skill, dedication and professionalism of the contact lens opticians and provides all of them with an opportunity to work closely with optometrist colleagues in delivering enhanced services. It is a historic moment for the profession and further highlights the shift towards a multi-disciplinary team in a primary care setting complimenting each other’s skills and increasing the services they can offer.”

He went on to say, “ABDO would like to thank the forward thinking approach adopted by the LOCSU Board, colleagues at WOPEC for engaging extensively along with the General Optical Council, ABDO Members and various external professionals who have contributed to this project. Currently there are approximately 120 CLO’s working their way through the WOPEC modules with a view to having a further OSCE in the early part of 2019.”

CLO Max Halford, ABDO Regional Lead for the South and Devon LOC Chair was one of the successful candidates.

He says, “The MECS course was the most interesting training I have ever undertaken. It formalized much of the extended eye health knowledge I had picked up over the years as a CLO and gave me an opportunity to experience an OSCE style exam. The course work was via a suite of video lectures which was great as I was able to choose when I wanted to study and it was easy to go back and recap bits that seemed tricky. Prior to the exam ABDO hosted a training day which was brilliant- it really gave us all the opportunity to practice our new skills and boosted our confidence. Hopefully a new MECS scheme launches in Plymouth in October of this year and the draft contract already includes accredited CLOs so I will be good to go!”

The iDay Conference announces programme for 2018

September 2018

The theme of next month’s Independents Day conference has been announced as Balancing Eyecare and Eyewear, focussing on the tightrope that independents walk between being clinicians and retailers.

The event organisers, the National Eyecare Group (NEG) and Proven Track Record, are launching a new roadshow format for the conference this year visiting three locations. There will also be new timings which are designed to be more convenient for independents, with the meetings running from 1pm-8.30pm.

The first roadshow will be in Wembley on 22 October, followed by Coventry on 29 October and Bolton on 30 October.

The keynote speaker is optical marketing expert Andy Clark, who is sponsored by Hoya. In his presentation, Who Do You Think You Are?, Mr Clark will look at what he calls the ‘fundamental practice archetypes’ and will demonstrate that independents need to understand which best defines both themselves and their practice.

The supporting line-up of speakers will feature independent practice owners who will share how they balance the eye care versus eyewear conundrum. They include Mark Holloway, optometrist and director of Thomas & Holloway Opticians, Michelle Beach, owner of Park Vision and Gerald Fernandes, director of Lynne Fernandes Optometrists.

Proven Track Record Managing Director, Nick Atkins, said: “These are people who have ‘walked the talk’ in their own businesses. Each will share their own unique perspective on successful independent practice and how they manage balancing the eye care versus eyewear conundrum.

“I think we have a great mix of experts sharing the stage this year and I’m particularly looking forward to the panel discussion that will close the meeting,” he concluded.

Dean Waugh
Focussing on the retail side of things will be Dean Waugh, designer and owner of RED (Retail Experience Design). He will discuss his passion for leading edge creative and considered design providing engaging health, wellbeing and retail environments.

NEG’s Operations Director, Phil Mullins, explained: “Dean has been delivering successful store environments and branding solutions for over 20 years. During his career, he has enjoyed working across a diverse range of clients and projects, from global brands to boutique and independent stores. He’s even bagged a few awards along the way and the optical market is now a core industry for RED.”

The programme will also feature breakout workshops featuring parallel interactive discussion sessions. Delegates can choose from

The Hearing Opportunity presented by Ryan Leighton, Chief Executive of Leightons Opticians & Hearing Care, Staff Retention and Development, presented by optical training expert Lindsey Small and Uncovering Your Practice Archetype by Mr Clark.

Three interactive CET points will be available courtesy of the event’s sponsors with Alcon supporting the presentation, Handle with Care, CooperVision supporting Myopia

Management in Everyday Practice and Heidelberg Engineering supporting the lecture, The Glaucoma Safari.

The popular iShow exhibition will be open to all independent practitioners, regardless of whether they attend the conference.

Frames, frames and more new frames, only at 100% Optical

September 2018

William Morris at 100% Optical
100% Optical 2019 will engage your senses and provide inspiration and knowledge for the year ahead!

Escape into a magical eyewear wonderland full of colour, futuristic design and innovation, fashion, style, glamour, surprise celebrity appearances, show exclusives and the very latest frame collections from across the globe.

Go to the 100% pages now and book your ticket

WOPEC launches Optical Assistant course

September 2018

WOPEC is to launch the first course aimed at Optical Assistants.

This course has been created especially for OAs who are either new to optical practice, or for those who are increasing duties within their practice.

WOPEC says the course is designed to give insight in to all the roles an Optical Assistant may undertake in practice and increase confidence to deliver an excellent service to their patients.

The attendance day will be held in the fully-equipped postgraduate clinics, located within the purpose-built Cardiff University School of Optometry and Vision Sciences. The day comprises undertaking pre-screen tests, managing a patient requesting an appointment, contact lens lessons and other duties required in practice. The course will be limited to a small group of 18 attendees and taught by experienced practitioners.

Contact Sasha Macken at Cardiff for more information.

Educationalists, Eyecare; become new sponsors on Opchat News.

August 2018

This month we welcome Eyecare to our Education and Training Section in the Suppliers Guide and as a double whammy we have also included them under our Exhibitions category.

Eyecare Conference

For Eyecare is showcasing its 2019 Exhibition, a firm favourite for those in Scotland and for many that enjoy the event and the City.

The Eyecare conference and exhibition plays host to the biggest exhibition of optical suppliers outside London and Birmingham. With more than 30 sponsors and exhibitors, Eyecare gives you the opportunity to try out and compare the latest equipment and technologies from the biggest brands. Whether you're looking for a special deal on a big-item purchase or just want to compare what's on offer between companies, you'll find everything you need at the Eyecare exhibition.

Meanwhile, the Eyecare conference offers a wide variety of clinically-relevant lectures and workshops worth up to 36 interactive CET points over 2 days, covering every competency and peer review, so it's possible to meet your entire CET requirement in one visit.

Headline sponsors for the 2019 conference are CooperVision, Optos, Scope Ophthalmics and The Edinburgh Clinic. Keynote presentations on Dry eye, Myopia control, Peripheral retina and cataract will be supported by a host of workshops on every aspect of clinical practice from varifocal dispensing to visual fields.

Our partners Eye News will return with their popular ophthalmology symposium including a workshop on what we can learn from the Bawa Garba case at the GMC and Optom Academy will be back with a revision course for Pre-Reg optometrists as well as a skills workshop on expanding practice through healthy living tests.

Access to the Eyecare exhibition is free and with conference passes starting from £99 this is the one event of 2019 that you really can’t afford to miss.

Eyecare’s expertise in assisting in your CET points is highlighted under our Training and Education listing in the suppliers guide. They specialise in distance learning. hosts 100 hours of CET covering every competency for Optometrists, Dispensing Opticians, Contact Lens Opticians and Therapeutic Optometrists. Many of the modules count for interactive points and subscribers can even download peer review packs. It’s a great way to meet your CET requirements from the comfort of your own home.’s popular webinar series returns in autumn with a second round of webinars on “Managing Myopia the Easy Way”.

Key topics within myopia management will be explored including communication with parents and children, refractive therapies and pharmaceutical solutions. The five-part series begins with 'Spectacle lenses for myopia control' at 6.30pm on Monday 10th September 2018.

Browse all available CET here or Book your place on the myopia webinars here

PHN welcomes support from major players in Optics providing our 7500 readership with a free independent news service 24/7 on the hoof if required.
Check out Eyecare’s 2 pages here:


CET Points

Specsavers deliver Certificate in Medical Retina to upgrade enhanced optical services.

August 2018

Specsavers Medical Retina CertOptometrists from each of the 22 Specsavers stores in Northern Ireland have completed a Professional Certificate in Medical Retina as part of the continued drive nationally to upgrade enhanced optical services (EOS) skills, to provide the very best eye care for high street customers.

The UK College of Optometrists accredited Medical Retina qualification was delivered by Ulster University’s Department of Optometry and was completed over two academic terms. It involved blended learning with both online and face-to-face study with lectures and tutorials from other optometrists and ophthalmologists who are experts in the field of medical retina. The course culminated in a series of clinical assessments and examinations.

The course enabled optometrists to learn the latest information on a variety of retinal conditions such as diabetic retinopathy and AMD (age-related macular degeneration) as well as develop knowledge in digital retinal imaging and using ocular coherence tomography.

The new qualifications are in addition to the suite of EOS accreditations already completed by the region’s optometrists covering Minor Eye Conditions, a Professional Certificate in Glaucoma, and the use of Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) in stores. More than 10,000 EOS accreditations have been completed by Specsavers optometrists in the last two years.

Course director, Dr Raymond Beirne from Ulster University says : ‘We are delighted that so many local Specsavers optometrists have taken the time and effort to enhance and upskill their knowledge and understanding of medical retina through this Ulster University course. It will be of huge benefit to Specsavers’ patients in the detection and management of sight threatening retinal diseases.’

Image: Left to right at Ulster University’s Belfast campus: Jill Campbell, optometrist, Lisburn store director and Head of Enhanced Optical Services in Northern Ireland; optometrist and OCT trainer Mike Horler; Dr Raymond Beirne, course director at Ulster University and Donna Harbison, store director and optometrist at Specsavers Omagh and Strabane stores who was awarded a distinction in her Medical Retina Professional Certificate exams.

ABDO's exam glitch found out.

August 2018

ABDO is extremely sorry to announce that it has discovered a serious problem concerning a case record submitted for the summer examination session 2018.

It would appear that around 130 students have been affected, who are all ABDO College students.

All students concerned are being written to today to inform them of the situation.

The GOC was informed immediately the problem was discovered. The ABDO College Trustees and the ABDO Board have also been informed.

A full and thorough investigation is under way and no further statements will be issued until these are completed.

PHN continues co-media relationship with Advanced Eye Care 2019 for second year.

August 2018

Advanced Eye Care Advance Eye Care 2019 invites all the participants from all over the world to attend "3rd International Conference and Expo on Advanced Eye Care and Cataract " during June 06-08, 2019 at London, UK, which includes prompt keynote presentations, oral seminars, poster presentations and exhibitions.

Our aim is to provide cataract surgeons, ophthalmologists, refractive surgeons, optometrists, opticians, young researchers, students, industrial delegates and anyone professionally involved in study of Advance eye care & Healthcare with an opportunity to learn about the complexity of the disease, discuss interventional procedures, look at new and advanced cataract removal practices and their efficiency and efficacy in the treatment of various refractive errors and cataract extraction, and understand local realities and practical constraints in improving vision-care.

Click on any of the Conference logos to read more about the event.

100% reports heightened activity in stand bookings for 2019

August 2018

100% Optical 2019
With visitor growth averaging 15% for 5 consecutive years 100% Optical is a must attend event for companies serious about increasing both their UK and International accounts.

With 9000+ buyers eager to learn more about your brand now is the time to book your stand and get involved!

Read throughout the forthcoming months on our 100% Co-media pages here where you can register free as from this month onwards to attend in January 2019.

Not booked your stand location in yet? Enquire to exhibit here

Click on the banner above to register right away.

Companies signed up for 2019 get beneficial eblast rates from Opchat News to over 4000 recipients throughout the year plus entry nearer the show for free in our preview pages.

ABDO College announces new Courses Coordinator for Optical Support Programmes.

August 2018

Rian Love BSc (Hons) SMC(Tech) FBDO has been appointed to take over from Steve Roberts as Courses Coordinator for Optical Support Programmes from August 2018.

Rian is a Dispensing Optician with extensive experience within the industry. He has worked as a tutor for ABDO College and the Worshipful Company of Spectacle Makers.

Jo Underwood, ABDO College Principal says, “I am delighted to welcome Rian Love to the ABDO College team as our new Courses Coordinator. Rian brings an extensive range of experience to the department which will help him to shape and develop our Optical Support Programme offering to students in the years ahead. The College ABDO team is looking forward to working with Rian as he takes up his new role

Rian says, “I am excited to be taking on this new role with ABDO College. I love optics and I love education. I think it is really important that everyone working in optics gets the chance to continue their education. The WCSM module system allows you to pick the modules that suit your practice, and you can use your optics knowledge to influence a better product.” He adds, “I want to help students feel supported. It’s not that long since I was a student and I want to use my recent experience in this role, adding to the extensive experience of the ABDO College staff.”

ABDO College supports and sponsors your free Opchat News, take a look at their pages and courseshere

New Year, and a New Vision With 100% Optical in 2019.

August 2018

100% Optical 2019The UK’s largest optical event, 100% Optical, opens for registration and promises a bigger, bolder, brighter “one stop show”.

It kick-starts the New Year by opening its doors slightly earlier, between 12-14 January at ExCel London, and will be the place to spot new looks and discover new brands, innovations and new opportunities.

“Our one stop show offers visitors a journey of discovery by showcasing the biggest ever collection of brands and suppliers under one roof, alongside the opportunity to gain invaluable CET points as part of a world class education programme,” said event director, Nathan Garnett.

“It has cemented itself as THE place to gather optical information, follow eyewear trends with the vibrant catwalk shows and discover the latest equipment. It also aims to inspire visitors with business intelligence and ideas to help them identify and work towards their future vision, be it for personal career progression or their optical practice,” he continued.

Brand new for 2019 is an Eyewear week initiative running from 7-13 January, where 100% Optical aims to generate public awareness around eyewear trends and technology by highlighting the latest designs from established brands and up-and-coming designers.

The Equipment Hub will be the biggest yet as it represents a particular area of growth and interest for the industry. Visitors will discover plenty of new brands with over 130 new eyewear, equipment, lenses and business services brands confirmed for 2019. Topcon, International Eyewear, Dunelm, Mainline Instruments, Lafont and Hanson Instruments are just a selection of the new additions and 75 per cent of the floor space has already been snapped up. Other exhibitor highlights include Andy Wolf, Optos, William Morris and Bausch + Lomb.

Brand new for 2019, the British Academy of Audiology (BAA) has become an official partner and will put together a comprehensive education seminar programme for the Audiology hub, alongside the Association of Optometrists.

100% Optical 2019

Event director, Nathan Garnett, said: “We’re eager for the return of 100% Optical as the High Street is about to have its worst year on record and optometrists need tools to help future proof their practice and become visionary leaders.

“The national debate around how to save the high street is gaining national and political attention. Optical practices will play a vital role in the survival and regeneration of the high street, providing an essential service that can’t be replicated online. With an ageing population optical professionals who diversify into areas like audiology and in supporting the NHS have a fantastic opportunity and should view the future with excitement.

“100% Optical 2019 will allow optical professionals the opportunity to work out how to capitalise on these changes to our industry.”

The AOP’s education programme will cover a broad array of topics from the latest myopia research, electrodiagnostics, overview of new technology and devices, guidance for newly qualified optometrists on improving referrals, the impact of artificial intelligence, the implications of the obesity time bomb, modern approaches to dry eye management, managing patients with visual impairment, career progression for optical assistants and binocular vision insights from leading speakers in orthoptics.

The Association of British Dispensing Opticians (ABDO) is returning to 100% Optical with a new location and the chance to speak to the ABDO team about topics from examinations to supporting your professional development.

The AOP awards and Royal College of Art Design competition also return for 2019, alongside ample business networking and socialising opportunities, plus the famous “after party” on Saturday night and central bar.

Travelling to 100% Optical just got quicker with Crossrail as the new connection opens in time for the show, making it easier to travel to London from the west and east and from Heathrow airport.

For more information and free registrations visit and follow us on social media @100optical #100optical

See the Co media Page on PHN now confirmed as partners for the 5th year running for 100% Optical 2019

Positive Impact celebrate launch of new Specialist Club

July 2018

Nick AtkinsPositive Impact is celebrating after the successful launch of its new Specialist Club in Wembley last week. The first meeting in the shadow of Wembley Stadium on 9 July, focused on specialist and niche contact lenses and attracted 60 practitioners, with some travelling from as far as Madrid and Dublin to attend.

The collaboration between specialist contact lens manufacturers made it a must attend event for anyone in specialist practice, or any practitioner interested in expanding their scope of fitting, "Positive Impact highlighted".

The inaugural event featured 4 hours of interactive CET lectures and an exhibition, with support from contact lens companies SynergEyes, Menicon and UltraVision, contact lens materials company Contamac and ophthalmic pharmaceutical company ENTOD, as well as Positive Impact. The British Contact Lens Association also supported the first event.

A case study from practice owner Indie Grewal got the conference off to a flying start, as he shared how he maximised the commercial opportunity of contact lenses in his St Albans practice following the recession of 2008. The presentation, ‘Successfully Commercialising a Niche Contact Lens Practice,’ from the dispensing optician and optometrist, proved an inspirational start to the day.

Mr Grewal told delegates: “Pareto's principle states that 20% of our inputs or activities are responsible for 80% of output. Increasing your contact lens business should start with a review of your current patients; they are the low hanging fruit.”

“Create a spreadsheet that contains patients who have yet to succeed in contact lenses, as well as a wish list for future contact lens patients,” he added. “That way when a new contact lens comes to market, you're in a position to respond in a targeted way,” he explained.

Mr Grewal highlighted that many practitioners have invested in optical coherence tomography over the past few years. “Topography in now becoming the gold standard in baseline measurement for contact lens patients. It gives you much more information than a keratometer and allows you to educate your patients, as well as stand out from the crowd,” he emphasised.

Mr Grewal recommended that practitioners keep a PDF of all contact lens fitting guides on their computer desktop and to always start with the appropriate fitting guide.

“Speak to professional services if you're not sure about anything. They are there to help and guide your success,” he said.

He emphasised the benefits of contact lenses for practitioners such as “a huge sense of satisfaction.” “Whether that be putting a young child into contact lenses, or fitting a frustrated presbyope with multifocals, there is contact lens solution available for most patients,” he said.

He highlighted that the recurring income from contact lenses, especially when tied to a direct debit collection meant that the practice can start every month with a cash injection.
“The long-term profitability of contact lenses is overlooked by so many practitioners. A patient who purchases spectacles and contact lenses will be more profitable than a specs-only patient,” he concluded.

Other topics at the event included modern hybrid contact lenses as an alternative for astigmatic and presbyopic astigmats, as well as successfully fitting scleral contact lenses. An overview of Ortho-K and myopia control was given by Josie Barlow, Professional Services Manager of Menicon, in her lecture, ‘An Overnight Success and Beyond.’

Speaking of the inaugural event, Ms Barlow said: “This type of meeting, where smaller more niche companies work collaboratively, had been discussed several times over a period of years. This event highlighted that the practitioners who attended were really engaged in the new bespoke devices available to them and the research that details the efficacy of such contact lens options. We would most certainly be keen to participate in any future events.”

Optometrist Lynn White, the Clinical Director of UltraVision, also gave delegates food for thought in her presentation, ‘Can I Fit a Soft Lens? Always Say Yes,’ which emphasised that it is possible to fit almost any corneal type with soft contact lenses. The exhibitors also had 10-minute slots to explain more about their products in two ‘show and tell’ sessions.

Positive Impact’s Director of Marketing and Professional Services, Nick Atkins, a former BCLA President, concluded: “It was an excellent day, with fantastic support from the delegates and sponsors and with rave reviews from both.

“I’d like to thank them all but especially the foresight of SynergEyes, Menicon, UltraVision and Contamac in understanding the power of collaboration, rather than competition, for the benefit of the profession.”

The Specialist Club event proved so popular that future conferences on other specialist topics and already being planned.

SILMO Bangkok 2018

July 2018

SILMO Bangkok 2018 proved to be THE trade platform for ASEAN’s optical industry with a record of 3,750 trade visitors from 42 countries

Silmo in BangkokThe first edition of SILMO Bangkok 2018 reflected its success as the gateway to ASEAN’s optical industry. More than 3,750 national and international trade visitors from 42 countries gathered, to explore this new chapter in ASEAN’s optical industry.

Mr. Loy Joon How, General Manager, IMPACT Exhibition Management Co., Ltd. (“IMPACT”), said, “The theme, ‘Business Meets Fashion’, was reflected through the showcases of the latest trends and eyewear collections from over 250 brands worldwide, including Alexander McQueen, Christopher Kane, ic! berlin, LINDA FARROW, Miu Miu, MUZIK, Paul Hueman, Stealer, Stella McCartney,

Sunday Somewhere, TAVAT Eyewear and VON ARKEL. SILMO Bangkok 2018 unveiled the SILMO Pop-Up Store, an area featuring dozens of brands and iconic eyewear collections, creating a brand new customer experience.”

“Topcon Instruments (Thailand) Co. Ltd, Langfang Far East Prosperous Optical Instrument Co., Ltd., Ningbo FLO Optical Technology Development Co., Ltd. showcased their latest instruments for examination, diagnosis, treatment as well as optometric instruments for refraction and eye-glass lens processing, whilst Hoya, Thai
Optical Group, Tokai and Zeiss presented their expertise in lens manufacturing with new technologies,” Mr. Loy added.

Fashion in Bangkok show for SILMO
Mr. Jessy Tissot, Sale Agent and consultant of Jeyes, France, who exhibited at SILMO Bangkok 2018, stated “We offer full leather frames, and we are targeting customers in Thailand and the region. However, it is difficult to reach customers in Thailand. SILMO Bangkok is a good platform for us to meet customers from Thailand and the region. That’s why I am here!”

“SILMO Bangkok may be the answer to our business strategy – a springboard for our business to grow in Thailand and the neighboring countries.” added by Mr. Torn Pracharktam, Managing Director, Thai Optical Group Public Co., Ltd.

The Thailand International Optometry Conference 2018, organized by the Association of Thai Optometrists attracted over 550 optometrists and opticians over the two-day accredited program.

With contributions from more than twenty renowned speakers, they explored insights in line with the theme, “Vision, learning, living and entertaining”. Visual development; visual screen technology toward better vision; the science behind lens designs to help patients live, and many other current topics were presented and discussed. In addition, knowledge that could be implemented into optical businesses including successful cases of online eyewear store and digital marketing solutions for optical shops and chain stores, were also shared.

Mr. Loy concluded, “SILMO Bangkok aims to bridge the gap between suppliers and manufacturers of eyewear; lenses; optometric instruments, equipment and machinery; and business services by facilitating business and providing learning opportunities. We look forward to a more vibrant and comprehensive edition next year and we are very excited to be a facilitator in these companies’ journey of establishing and expanding their presence in ASEAN’s optical industry.”
The second edition of SILMO Bangkok will be held on 19-21 June 2019, at IMPACT Exhibition and Convention Center.

Ground breaking research to be presented at premier OCT imaging conference

July 2018

City of BonnUK practitioners are being urged to book now for the world’s premier optical coherence tomography (OCT) imaging conference which takes place in Germany in October.

The 16th International SPECTRALIS Symposium (ISS) will be held on 12-13 October in a landmark building important to German history, the former Plenary Chamber of Germany's Parliament in Bonn, and will provide a broad overview of research and clinical applications supported by the SPECTRALIS product family, with a social evening event for delegates on the Friday evening (12 October).

Heidelberg Engineering Academy events have become known for their atmosphere of vibrant scientific exchange over the years. The scientific programme for the 16th ISS includes a wide spectrum of topics and interactive sessions and will feature presentations from experts from around the world. Presentations topics will include deep learning and artificial intelligence in image analysis, OCT angiography, and OCT in optic neuropathies.

Heidelberg Engineering UK Director, Krysten Williams, explained: “The ISS gives clinicians and researchers the venue and opportunity to share their discoveries and findings in a creative atmosphere.”

She added: “Practitioners who own a SPECTRALIS go to the ISS and discover just how much their SPECTRALIS can do, how it can broaden their horizons and what a worthwhile educational tool it really is.”

“The ISS offers practitioners the opportunity to learn from their peers around the world how they can maximise the potential of diagnostic imaging to improve patient care.”

Among those attending ISS will be Katheryn Escott of Penzer Opticians in Birmingham. The optometrist has used OCT for three years and won a trip to the symposium in a draw at Optrafair in April.

“I was quite amazed to hear that I’d won the competition,” she said. Looking ahead to ISS, she concluded: “I’m always looking to get more knowledge and am really looking forward to finding out about the new developments in the latest technology. I’m particularly keen to find out more about the analysis of images.”

Heidelberg Engineering Academy highlights that booking for ISS closes on September 21 and urges practitioners wishing to attend to book now at


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