by The Welthi Bureau
Second World Congress of Optometry 2017 opened in Hyderabad. Over 1,500 delegates comprising optometrists, researchers, educators, students and health professionals from around the world and India are participating in the conference.
Deliberations will focus on the future of Optometry, upgrading optometrists’ skills, as well as developing clinical and professional knowledge and skills. The conference will offer opportunities for networking among participants in a collegial spirit, and further the exchange of knowledge and experiences for professional enhancement, education and career development.
The biennial congress is a World Council of Optometry (WCO) initiative organised in partnership with the Asia Pacific Council of Optometry (APCO) and the India Vision Institute (IVI).
The conference theme is ‘Accessible, quality vision and eye health’, which ties into the WHO’s ‘Universal Eye Health: A global action plan 2014-2019’. The plan aims to reduce the prevalence of avoidable visual impairment by 25% by 2019. WCO envisions accomplishing this by placing a strong and equitable eye health system within which optometry plays a valuable and essential role.
Mr Vinod Daniel said, "Sometimes all it takes to address visual impairment is a pair of spectacles. Through vision screening programs and by providing free spectacles to those in need, IVI is hoping to make a difference. Generating awareness in communities will also help play a catalytic role in achieving faster results."
The national requirement of around 150,000 professionals, there are currently only 40,000 optometrists in India. There is clearly a big shortfall in optometrists, which needs to be looked into.
Optometrists undertakes vision screening programs across India and provides free spectacles, where needed, to disadvantaged communities.
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