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Opchat Magazine Contact Lens PagesContact Lens News, January to March 2020



"Contact lenses can be at the forefront of a new era in eye health’ - BCLA chief excited for the future
'The end of an era' - BCLA bids a fond farewell to Cheryl Donnelly
IACLE makes resources available to all contact lens educators during COVID-19 pandemic
ACLM Year Book Now Available Online on New Website
ABDO broadens the work of CLOs in Wales
Further webinar announced by BCLA
Register today for the BCLA Webinar, next week!
Contact lenses promise AR-viewing capabilities
Webinar will discuss putting the skill back into soft lens fitting
Tickets now available for the NCC event in March!
IACLE calls for entries for 2020 Educator of the Year and Travel Awards
Special edition of CLAE to focus on myopia management
Read last quarter's Contact News (October to December 2019)

"Contact lenses can be at the forefront of a new era in eye health’ - BCLA chief excited for the future

April 2020

The new chief executive of the British Contact Lens Association will focus on the organisation’s “exemplary commitment to high standards and guidelines for practice” as part of a drive to ensure the brand is synonymous with career and professional development.

Luke Stevens BurkeLuke Stevens-Burt will join the BCLA later in April, taking over from long-serving predecessor Cheryl Donnelly. Having started his career in the Armed Forces, he has forged a professional background in membership associations across the healthcare, information, education and public sector industries.

In an open letter to BCLA members announcing his arrival he said: “The BCLA exists within a similar ecosystem to all other membership and associations. They face similar challenges and share experience across the professional spectrum.

“I intend to tap into the wide amount of knowledge from across this ecosystem to implement positive change and introduce tried and tested solutions and strategies to enhance the standing of the BCLA and build a valuable experience for all members.

“I foresee the BCLA achieving success through the brand being synonymous with career and professional development and raising the profile of the profession. It needs to be seen as a leading stakeholder by both the profession and the public.

“The former, through BCLA's exemplary commitment to high standards and guidelines for practice, and an active partner in key initiatives for the benefit of optometry. The latter, through a growing base of patients that receive the highest of care - in both practice and information - with a reduction in non-clinical dropout rates and improved ocular surface and anterior eye health.

“With the ongoing convergence of advanced technology, information systems and biology, the profession is at the cusp of truly amazing opportunities. Smart contact lenses are a leap into the 21st century and herald the real possibility of our specialism being at the forefront of a new era in eye health.”

Mr Stevens-Burt has pledged to bolster membership support, engagement and development through member and sector-responsive design, while also bolstering the BCLA’s standing in overseas markets, specifically South East Asia.

He takes over from Cheryl Donnelly, who departed the association on 27 March after more than six years at the helm. During her time as chief executive Cheryl achieved an increased worldwide reach for the BCLA, including the launch of a new conference in Asia. She was responsible for the organisation’s 40th birthday celebrations and oversaw a number of hugely successful BCLA Clinical Conferences and Exhibitions, most recently in Manchester last year.

She played a pivotal role in the launch of a new suite of exclusive member resources, including promoting the acclaimed ‘No Water’ stickers and ‘Contact Lens Dos and Don’ts’ factsheets, and paved the way for innovative, 21st century communication – which culminated in the launch of webinars and live-streamed lectures to allow more members than ever before to access exclusive BCLA content no matter where they are in the world. She also oversaw the introduction of the popular Dry Eye certificate and the soon-to-be-launched Myopia Management certificate.

President Jonathon Bench said: “Cheryl Donnelly has been a brilliant ambassador for the BCLA who has a long-lasting legacy to be proud of. She has been a true pioneer and embraced the culture of change and innovation that lies at the heart of the association.

“We now look forward to a new era with Luke at the helm. He is someone with huge passion and drive and his knowledge of growing membership organisations gives us the opportunity to push the BCLA even further.”

'The end of an era' - BCLA bids a fond farewell to Cheryl Donnelly

March 2020


Cheryl Donnelly Past CEO of BCLA
By anyone’s standards this has been an extraordinary week. Never has the word ‘unprecedented’ been so widely used.

As we all come to terms with the impact the global coronavirus pandemic is having on our daily lives, here at the BCLA we are also going through a period of huge change.

Last week marked the final day in position of our long-serving Chief Executive Cheryl Donnelly and we wanted to take the chance to say one final ‘thank-you’ for all Cheryl has done for the BCLA throughout her six years in the role.

During her time as chief executive Cheryl achieved an increased worldwide reach for the BCLA, including the launch of a new conference in Asia. She was responsible for the organisation’s 40th birthday celebrations and oversaw a number of hugely successful BCLA Clinical Conferences and Exhibitions, most recently in Manchester last year.


Cheryl has played a pivotal role in the launch of a new suite of exclusive member resources, including promoting the acclaimed ‘No Water’ stickers and ‘Contact Lens Dos and Don’ts’ factsheets, and paved the way for innovative, 21st century communication – which culminated in the launch of webinars and live-streamed lectures to allow more members than ever before to access exclusive BCLA content no matter where they are in the world.

She also oversaw the introduction of the popular Dry Eye certificate and the soon-to-be-launched Myopia Management certificate.

Our President Jonathon Bench said: “Cheryl Donnelly has been a brilliant ambassador for the BCLA who has a long-lasting legacy to be proud of. She has been a true pioneer and embraced the culture of change and innovation that lies at the heart of the association."

A warm welcome to Luke Stevens-Burt

Luke Stevens BurkeCheryl’s successor is due to join us next month and we look forward to welcoming Luke Stevens-Burt to the BCLA family. Having started his career in the Armed Forces, Luke has forged a professional background in membership associations across the healthcare, information, education and public sector industries.

He said: "The BCLA is a world-renowned organisation and it is a real privilege for me to have been given the responsibility of ensuring this well-respected association continues to grow, thrive and inspire.

"I’ve seen and heard so many good things about the BCLA and I would like to place on record my thanks to my predecessor Cheryl Donnelly who has done such an incredible job throughout her six years in the role. We wish her well. She will be sorely missed and we look forward to seeing her at future BCLA events.

"I formally take the reins in April but before then I would like to outline my vision for the BCLA and explain more about how I see us progressing together on our journey to bolstering this Association’s position as a truly global beacon for excellence in the ocular surface and the anterior eye. Keep an eye on your inbox and I will be in touch soon."

IACLE makes resources available to all contact lens educators during COVID-19 pandemic

March 2020

WeChat
The International Association of Contact Lens Educators (IACLE) is offering all educators access to online resources for remote teaching during the global COVID-19 outbreak.

The IACLE Case Reports Series is now in the ‘Free Resources’ area of the IACLE website www.iacle.org. It provides 23 illustrated, interactive case reports with multiple-choice questions, for non-members and members alike to share with their students.

This resource is available in English, Spanish, Portuguese, Korean and simplified Chinese.

IACLE Resources
The 2013 version of the IACLE Contact Lens Course (ICLC) comprises 10 modules in 55 parts in PowerPoint format and is also available under 'Free Resources' as a student aid.

The latest version of the course – ICLC2020 – will be launched next month and is among a wide range of online resources for IACLE members. The IACLE Education Team is currently developing a series of narrated lectures as additional support for its members worldwide.

IACLE President Dr Shehzad Naroo commented: ‘While many countries are facing a lockdown situation and most universities have closed already, it is important to ensure that the academic year is not wasted for our students.

IACLE is making available some great online teaching resources for all educators to share with students in these unusual global circumstances.’

ACLM Year Book Now Available Online on New Website

March 2020

ACLM Year BookThe product manual of the Association of Contact Lens Manufacturers has now been published online as part of our newly launched website www.aclm.org.uk. In easily searchable form it lists technical details for all the contact lenses, solutions and materials produced by ACLM member companies, and covers the overwhelming bulk of products available in the UK.

It is the most comprehensive online dynamic interactive directory of contact lenses and contact lens care products available to the optical profession. The Year Book has become an essential product guide and handy reference for contact lens practitioners and is now available on computers, tablets, smartphones and other mobile devices.

The website is a completely new version, aimed at encouraging new wearers, supporting existing ones and with a restricted area for eye care practitioners.

There is a separate restricted area in which the Year Book tables are available in easily searchable form and which can be viewed on the full range of electronic devices.

Access to these tables is free for all those who have purchased the latest hard copy Year Book version, as well as BCLA members and selected students at the various training establishments.

Practitioners can offer their patients the finest and most appropriate products available today by obtaining the latest copy of the Year Book and then choosing how they access the tables. Probably the best way to subscribe is by Direct Debit which secures a 35% discount every year, and also guarantees being among the first to receive the latest issue automatically. Practitioners can order the Year Book from the Home Page of the ACLM website at www.aclm.org.uk. Alternatively, join the British Contact Lens Association (BCLA) and receive free access to the Year Book Online as part of its membership package (conditions apply)

ABDO broadens the work of CLOs in Wales

March 2020

Contact Lens Opticians in Wales will be able to work within the Eye Health Exam Wales (EHEW) scheme, joining colleagues in England already delivering Minor Eye Conditions Services. The EHEW scheme is part of Wales Eyecare Services (WECS) which enables patients to receive urgent care or monitor patients with certain conditions in optical practices within the community instead of the hospital eye service.

CLO Haylie Pritchard is one of the first to take part in the scheme. She says, “I am delighted to be involved in the EHEW scheme for CLOs in Wales. Having worked alongside optometrists delivering this service for a number of years, I have seen first-hand the positives of being able to provide primary eye health advice in practice. Patients can be seen swiftly and feel reassured they are getting expert assistance. I am excited to use the skills I have learnt during this program to elevate the level of care I can give my patients.”

Sharon Beatty, Clinical Co-Lead, Training and Accreditation Manager, Eye Health Examination Wales, says, “I am thrilled that WOPEC has been able to work with ABDO and Optometry Wales to bring such an exciting development to the EHEW service. We are delighted that Contact Lens Opticians are joining the EHEW service and utilising their expertise for the benefit of patients in Wales.”

Dr Nik Sheen, Clinical Co-Lead, Training and Accreditation Manager, Eye Health Examination Wales, says, “Delivery of the EHEW service now enables EHEW accredited Contact Lens Opticians to see those patients presenting with an acute anterior eye care problem. This is great news for Wales and particularly practices that are seeing increasing numbers of these patients so that the skills and expertise of contact lens opticians can be utilised fully.”

Further webinar announced by BCLA

February 2020

Scleral lenses to feature in a new BCLA webinar session announced today

Scleral lenses are growing in popularity, with an ever-growing number of practitioners turning to them as a go-to solution for certain contact lens patients.

The lenses will be the subject of a forthcoming BCLA webinar dedicated to all-things scleral, with Dr Melissa Barnett advising all those taking part how to ‘jumpstart your scleral lens practice’.

Dr Barnett is the principal optometrist at the University of California, Davis Eye Center in Sacramento. She is an internationally recognised key opinion leader, specialising in anterior segment disease and speciality contact lenses.

Dr Barnett lectures and publishes extensively on topics including dry eye, anterior segment disease, contact lenses and creating a healthy balance between work and home life for women in optometry.

She will use the webinar as an opportunity to understand how you can incorporate scleral lenses within your practice by discussing scleral lens indications, fitting, evaluation and after-care. Tips and tricks for scleral lens handling will be reviewed and those taking part will be able to quiz Dr Barnett as she delves into the art and science of scleral lenses.

Dr Barnett said: “Scleral lenses improve the lives of patients and practitioners who fit them. The webinar gives us the chance to evaluate scleral lens selection and follow-up care while discussing common scleral lens problems and troubleshooting techniques.

“We will discuss the scleral lens fitting process along with in-office management tips for scleral lens practitioners.”

The online session will be held between 6.30pm and 7.30pm on Wednesday, 8 April. To register, and to find out more, visit www.bcla.org.uk.

Register today for the BCLA Webinar, next week!

February 2020


BCLA Logo

DATE: Wednesday 26 February 2020; TIME: 6:30pm - 7:30pm; Approved for 1 CET point (OO, DO, CLO)


The Webinar next week will discuss the topic of soft lenses, examining drop-out rates and putting forward suggestions for how eye care practitioners can ‘get control’ over their fitting.

BCLA Webinar
The online session will be presented by educator and researcher Dr Eef van der Worp.

He will help viewers gain an understanding of the limitations of the current methods of soft lens fitting and discuss new potential methods of soft lens fitting, while looking at a new mathematical model to possibly predict soft lens fit success.



The session will evaluate when to use ‘off the peg’ standard soft designs for the normal eye and discuss the use of custom-made lens designs, for the ‘out-of-standard’ eye.

Webinars are inclusive of BCLA Membership

This webinar is available to all BCLA members as part of membership benefits. Members will need to register in advance to receive Webinar access.

Please ensure you are logged into your BCLA membership account when registering.

Register Now here

 

Contact lenses promise AR-viewing capabilities

 January 2020

A California company is developing a contact lens that contains the world’s smallest display screen

Mojo Vision source Springwise.com
Spotted: The startup Mojo Vision is hoping to leapfrog phone and glasses-based augmented reality products, by developing a screen that fits on a contact lens and which is capable of displaying 14,000 pixels per inch. The contact lenses would let users view augmented reality images right directly from their eyeballs, in a move that Mojo labels, Invisible Computing.

Unlike some cumbersome glasses, the rigid, gas-permeable lenses are all but invisible while being worn. They contain miniature batteries and MicroLEDs, which use just 10 per cent of the power of current LCD displays, and have between five and 10 times the brightness of organic light-emitting diodes, allowing them to be used for outdoor viewing.

The lenses are still in the R&D phase, but Mojo has raised $108 million (€98 million) in funding to develop a prototype. The idea is that, eventually, the contact lenses will overlay information about the real world, directly in front of the users’ eyes.

Uses for the lenses could range from the mundane — flashing the name of someone who is approaching you — to the life-changing, such as helping people with low vision by providing enhanced image overlays.

While the Mojo lenses are still a way off commercialisation, other glasses hoping to deliver an AR experience are also being developed. At Springwise, we have covered AR glasses that generate immersive experiences from a smartphone, and smart glasses that project holograms only the wearer can see.

Although the Mojo Vision contact lenses are not yet in commercial development, the company recently announced that it is working with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to fast track the use of the lenses by those with vision impairment. As AR becomes more commonplace, it is likely that companies wishing to sell glasses to those with visual impairments will have to adjust their prototypes, to keep up. If lenses such as Mojo’s work as promised, new creative uses for AR will likely not be far behind

Source Springwise.com

Webinar will discuss putting the skill back into soft lens fitting

January 2020

BCLA Webinar info
The latest BCLA webinar will discuss the topic of soft lenses, examining drop-out rates and putting forward suggestions for how eye care practitioners can ‘get control’ over their fitting.



The online session, to be held between 6.30pm and 7.30pm on Wednesday, 26 February, will be presented by educator and researcher Eef van der Worp.

He will help viewers gain an understanding of the limitations of the current methods of soft lens fitting and discuss new potential methods of soft lens fitting, while looking at a new mathematical model to possibly predict soft lens fit success.

The session will evaluate when to use ‘off the peg’ standard soft designs for the normal eye and discuss the use of custom-made lens designs, for the ‘out-of-standard’ eye.

Eef, adjunct assistant Professor at Pacific University College of Optometry (Oregon, USA) and the University of Montreal University College of Optometry (CA), said: “Soft contact lenses ‘as we know them’ are becoming more and more a commodity product rather than a medical device, and ECPs do not actually ‘fit’ soft lenses anymore.

“At the same time, we are seeing large dropout rates and stagnating contact lens markets in the western world. Can we turn this around, and give ECPs some grip or control back over the fitting process?

“Drop-out rates and the reasons for that are complex, with tear film components and dry eyes as just one factor, and lens material, lens surface friction and edge design as other important components – as well as environmental factors.

“Many of these factors we as eye care practitioners (ECPs) have no say over, and no control over. What we do have control over is the lens fit. This discussion focuses on that topic: how can we get control over the fitting of soft lenses – and optimize lens fit, in order to best respect and follow the shape of the ocular surface.”

To register, and to find out more, visit www.bcla.org.uk.
 

Tickets now available for the NCC event in March!

 January 2020


Following on from the success at the NCC events in 2016 & 2018, the NCC continues its scientific collaboration with the BCLA. Dr. Carolina Kunnen from the NCC together with Professor James Wolffsohn of Aston University and the BCLA’s academic team hosted the NCC/BCLA abstract submissions program. Event location and date 15 & 16 March 2020, Veldhoven, Netherlands.

The scientific track, parallel to the general education tracks at NCC ‘Beyond 2020’, is designed to maintain the high reputation developed by the BCLA for showcasing world class clinically relevant research, nurturing new researchers and young academics to present at this level.

All abstracts presented during the NCC 2020 meeting will continue to be published in Contact Lens and Anterior Eye (CLAE).

Take a look at the full programme here!

The event's theme is “Beyond 2020”: Taking a look into the future and will realising successful contact lens wear is more than just an correcting visual acuity!

You can get more information about the programme and to book tickets for the event here.

 

IACLE calls for entries for 2020 Educator of the Year and Travel Awards

 January 2020

Six contact lens educators from around the world will be attending major international meetings this year, as winners of the 2020 IACLE Awards.

The International Association of Contact Lens Educators (IACLE) is offering educators worldwide the chance to become IACLE Contact Lens Educator of the Year and travel to the annual meeting of the American Academy of Optometry (AAO), Academy 2020 Nashville, in Tennessee, USA (8-10 October). IACLE Contact Lens Educator of the Year will be awarded to three individuals, one from each of IACLE’s three global regions:

• 2020 IACLE Americas Contact Lens Educator of the Year

• 2020 IACLE Asia Pacific Contact Lens Educator of the Year

• 2020 IACLE Europe / Africa – Middle East Contact Lens Educator of the Year

These awards recognize and reward achievements in contact lens education and are sponsored by CooperVision with support from the Academy. The winners will each receive a bursary of up to US$3,000 towards the cost of attending Academy 2020 Nashville and permission to use the title 2020 IACLE Contact Lens Educator of the Year for their region.

The IACLE Contact Lens Educator of the Year Awards are open to all IACLE members who have been paid-up members for at least 3 years. Members can either nominate themselves, or be nominated by another member, their IACLE regional / country coordinator or IACLE staff. Applicants must demonstrate use of IACLE resources, engagement with IACLE, impact on their institution and the ways that they inspire their students to become future contact lens practitioners.

‘Continuous advances in contact lens technology require ongoing evolution in contact lens education,’ said Dr Gary Orsborn, Vice President of Global Professional and Clinical Affairs for CooperVision. ‘We are proud to continue our partnership with IACLE to recognize the educators who never cease to give their students the best possible preparation for a career in optometry – today, tomorrow, and well into the future. We look forward to celebrating those who rise to the top in 2020.’

JIACLE Recepients 2019The IACLE Travel Awards are bursaries of up to US$3,000 allowing IACLE Educator Members to attend international meetings. The IACLE Travel Awards are sponsored by IACLE through the generous support of all IACLE’s sponsors (Alcon, CooperVision, Johnson & Johnson Vision, Bausch + Lomb and Euclid).

This year there will be three IACLE Travel Awards. Recipients will attend either Academy 2020 Nashville (one award), or the Association of Optometric Contact Lens Educators (AOCLE) Annual Workshop (one award) in Fort Lauderdale, Florida (28-31 May), or another major meeting to be agreed by the IACLE Executive Board (one award). Academy attendance is supported by AAO and
AOCLE attendance by AOCLE.

‘A dream fulfilled’ is how 2019 IACLE Travel Award recipient Joseph Afonne from Mzuzu University, Malawi described his experience of attending the British Contact Lens Association Clinical Conference in Manchester, UK last year. And 2019 IACLE EAME Contact Lens Educator of the Year Dr Fabrizio Zeri of the Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca, Italy said being chosen for this prestigious award was ‘a great honour’.

IACLE President Dr Shehzad Naroo said: ‘I would encourage all members to consider applying for the 2020 awards or perhaps nominate someone for an award. We are grateful to all our sponsors for their support, to CooperVision for continuing to sponsor the Educator Awards, and to the American Academy of Optometry and AOCLE for additional support.’

Pictures above:

IACLE President Dr Shehzad Naroo (left) and Dr Gary Orsborn (right), Vice President, Global Professional and Clinical Affairs at CooperVision, pictured with some of the 2019 IACLE Awards winners (l-r) Dr Fabrizio Zeri (Italy), Professor Craig Woods (Australia), Joseph Afonne (Malawi) and Dr Rubén Velázquez (Mexico), and BCLA President Professor Sunil Shah (second right), at the 2019 British Contact Lens Association Clinical Conference.
 

Special edition of CLAE to focus on myopia management

 January 2020

A special edition of a respected contact lens journal will focus on the issue of myopia management – with key contributions from two of the world’s leading experts.

Dr Kate Gifford and Dr Nicola Logan have teamed up to guest edit January’s edition of the BCLA journal Contact Lens and Anterior Eye (CLAE), which will feature articles discussing the increasing global interest in myopia management and the results of an international survey of contact lens fitting for myopia control in children.

The journal will also look at global trends in myopia management attitudes and strategies in clinical practice.
Editor of CLAE, Dr Shehzad Naroo, said: “The BCLA peer reviewed publication, CLAE, is extremely proud to be starting the new decade with a themed issue of the journal that is on the very current and relevant topic of myopia control with contact lenses.

“We are certain that this will become a useful knowledge resource for the BCLA members and others involved in the field. There are some great papers in the issue and the editorial process for this issue was guided by guest editors and experts in the area, Dr Nicola Logan and Dr Kate Gifford.”

The journal features the results of a raft of worldwide studies into myopia, including papers from esteemed researchers including Professor Philip Morgan and Nathan Efron and Professor James Wolffsohn.

Jonathon Bench BCLA President
BCLA President Jonathon Bench said: “We have seen an explosion in interest in myopia management in recent years, to the point where it has become one of the biggest talking points among contact lens professionals.

“A dedicated edition of CLAE, featuring guest contributions from some of the world’s most respected professionals in this very specialist field, gives myopia management the platform it needs and warrants.

“This will help further raise awareness and give eye care professionals access to the very latest thinking and research around an issue which is sure to feature prominently in everyday practice for years to come.”

BCLA announces plan for global consensus report on contact lenses and issues call for expert authors

December 2019

A new BCLA global consensus report will deliver evidence-based guidance on contact lenses and the anterior eye to ensure the best possible care for patients around the world.

The Contact Lens Evidence-based Academic Reports (CLEAR) will be published in the March 2021 edition of the BCLA journal ‘Contact Lens and Anterior Eye’ (CLAE) and will feature work from a panel of globally-respected experts.

The reports will set the standard that all researchers and ECPs will refer to as best practice to ensure the profession delivers the best evidence-based patient care.

Executive Chair of CLEAR, Professor James Wolffsohn, said: “I am delighted the BCLA, as the most well-established contact lens and anterior eye organisation in the world, has supported this initiative to review the academic literature on contact lenses.

“This involves the top experts and will allow us to draw conclusions and to form global consensus to support clinicians with what information is supported by evidence, researchers as to the gaps in current knowledge and to guide industry in what still needs to be achieved.”

The CLEAR reports will follow in the footsteps of two similar projects in the spheres of dry eye and myopia, the TFOS DEWS II report and the IMI white papers.

A series of nine global consensus reports will be compiled during 2020, with planned publication within the BCLA journal Contact Lens and Anterior Eye in March 2021.

Papers will be chaired by internationally renowned experts and will focus on the following subjects:

• Anatomy and Physiology of the Anterior Eye - Dr Laura Downie
• Biochemistry of lens materials, coating, comfort drops and solutions - Professor Mark Willcox
• Effect of lens materials/design on the anatomy and physiology of the eye - Professor Philip Morgan
• Speciality lenses - Professor Pauline Cho and Dr Melissa Barnett
• Contact lens complications - Professor Fiona Stapleton
• Medical use of contact lenses - Associate Professor Debbie Jacobs
• Contact lens optics - Dr Kathryn Richdale
• Future applications of contact lenses - Professor Lyndon Jones
• Evidence based contact lens practice - Professor James Wolffsohn

If you have expertise in any of the subject areas listed above and would like to be considered as a co-author, please contact the BCLA by 20th December 2019.

Vice-Chair Professor Philip Morgan from the University of Manchester said: “I look forward to working with the BCLA and with colleagues from around the world to present this evidence-based and timely summary on the current state of contact lens research and practice.

“This special issue of the journal will provide an excellent resource for the CLAE readership and help direct future research efforts to both optimise products and improve patient care.”

 
 
 
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