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  • Educating the Public Through Media and Web Presence

    Academy spokesperson Anne Sumers, MD, appeared on CBS This Morning to inform the public on children’s vision issues.

    The Academy reaches millions of people around the world through its proactive media outreach efforts. This exposure, combined with promotion of the Academy’s EyeSmart website, increases ophthalmology’s presence in the public eye. Through compelling and consistent media coverage, our members and the public stay better informed of important Academy initiatives, educational resources and breaking news. Each story also raises the public’s awareness and understanding about the value eye physicians and surgeons bring to society.

    Academy spokespeople were quoted in more than 3,000 media stories in 2015. Media coverage peaked around AAO 2015. The meeting attracted a record 120 journalists on site and the Academy was featured in close to 500 articles, including stories in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post.

    The Bulldog Reporter, a leading public relations trade publication, awarded the Academy two gold Bulldog Awards for our efforts to warn consumers about the blinding dangers of fireworks. More than 200 news stories about the campaign appeared in outlets such as CBS News, and the Chicago Tribune. In total, news coverage generated 250 million media impressions. The animated video also appeared on TV networks nationwide and received significant viewer traffic on YouTube.

    • An interview on CBS This Morning with Academy clinical spokesperson Anne Sumers, MD, on Back-to-School eye health.The Academy also partnered with the CDC to support their Contact Lens Safety Week and promote proper handling of contact lenses.The campaign resulted in coverage from several news outlets, including CNN, USA Today, Huffington Post and Buzzfeed.
    • Academy clinical spokesperson Thomas L. Steinemann, MD, discussed the dangers of wearing non-prescription costume contact lenses on Good Morning America, as part of the Academy's annual Halloween eye safety campaign.
    • Academy President Russell N. Van Gelder MD, PhD, explained Ebola's impact on the eyes in features carried by several top-tier media outlets, including this story by National Public Radio.
    • The Academy also partnered with the CDC to support their Contact Lens Safety Week and promote proper handling of contact lenses. The campaign resulted in coverage from several news outlets, including CNN, USA Today, Huffington Post and Buzzfeed.

    The Academy increased public engagement in its eye health initiatives via its EyeSmart Facebook and Twitter channels and its EyeSmart e-newsletter. The
    Facebook page has more than 30,000 likes, the Twitter channel has over 9,500 followers and the newsletter has 10,500 subscribers. EyeSmart set new traffic records, reaching 3 million page views per month and 1 million unique visitors.