• Academy Notebook

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    WHAT’S HAPPENING

    Truhlsens Donate $500,000 to Support Ophthalmic Education

    The Academy received a $500,000 donation from longtime Academy supporters Stanley M. Truhlsen, MD, and his wife, Dottie Truhlsen. The Dr. Stanley and Dorothy Truhlsen Simula­tion Education Initiative Endowment Fund will support state-of-the-art sim­ulation and interactive learning tech­nology for the subspecialty centers on the Ophthalmic News and Education (ONE) Network. The ONE Network is the Academy’s flagship educational resource for evidence-based medicine, surgical advancements, and quality of care improvements.

    “When the American Academy of Ophthalmology and Otolaryngology was formed in 1896, its primary mission was education,” said Dr. Truhlsen. “Today, this continues to be its most important function. The ONE Network provides education to ophthalmologists, resi­dents, fellows, and medical students on the national level and around the world. We are proud to support the Academy’s many accomplishments and innovations in its educational pursuits.”

    The fund will ensure the continued development of learning tools includ­ing but not limited to the following:

    • 10+ cutting-edge simulators
    • Interactive exercises
    • Self-assessments
    • Surgical videos with in-depth discus­sions of complication management
    • 3D ocular anatomy models to teach complex anatomical concepts to stu­dents and residents
    • Games involving virtual patients to test decision-making and cognitive abilities

    These tools will serve to enhance the subspecialty education centers on the ONE Network: the Dr. Charles R. and Judith G. Munnerlyn Laser Surgery Education Center, the David E.I. Pyott Glaucoma Education Center, the Knights Templar Eye Foundation Pediatric Ophthalmology Education Center, and the future retina and cata­ract education centers.

    “Dottie and Stan Truhlsen are remarkable for the breadth of their philanthropic interests—ophthalmic history, vision research, and education,” said David W. Parke II, MD, Academy CEO. “Their commitments to both the Academy and to the University of Nebraska Medical Center have sig­nificantly enhanced both organiza­tions. Their latest gift will enable us to advance digital patient management simulations and are evidence of their visionary approach to education. New programs emerging from this project will facilitate learning for thousands of ophthalmologists around the world for decades to come.”

    Truhlsen Donation
    TRUHLSEN DONATION. Dr. and Mrs. Truhlsen’s gift will establish simulators and interactive learning tools on the ONE Network.

    TAKE NOTICE

    EyeWiki Contest: Read the 4 Winning Articles

    EyeWiki is the Academy’s collaborative online encyclopedia where physicians, patients, and the public can view content written by ophthalmologists covering the spectrum of eye disease, diagnosis, and treatment. In 2016, the Academy invited U.S. residents and fellows-in-training to submit articles to EyeWiki as part of a writing contest. The 4 winning authors won free trips to this month’s Mid-Year Forum in Washington, D.C. (April 26-29).

    • Brenton D. Finklea, MD, Wills Eye Hospital at Thomas Jefferson Univer­sity Hospital: Zonulopathy: Evaluation and Surgical Management
    • Helen Jiang, MD, New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai: Fre­quency Doubling Technology
    • Austin M. Pharo, MD, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center: Müller’s Muscle–Conjunctival Resection Blepharoptosis Repair
    • Peter H. Tang, MD, PhD, University of Minnesota: Retina Prosthesis 

    For a chance to win a trip to the 2018 Mid-Year Forum, U.S. residents and fellows must submit by Dec. 1. International ophthalmologists are also able to participate via the International Ophthalmologist Contest for a chance to win online Academy products—sub­missions are accepted until June 1.

    To read the winning articles and submit to the contest, visit aao.org/eyewiki.

    Low Vision Initiative: New Video

    Vision rehabilitation services can help lessen the impact of visual loss in low vision patients and improve their independence and quality of life. To underscore this message, Joseph L. Fontenot, MD, chair of the Academy’s Vision Rehabilitation committee, led the production of a 6-minute video ti­tled “There Is Something Else You Can Do.” With an introduction by David W. Parke II, MD, Academy CEO, this video for physicians emphasizes the impact of vision loss on the individual and the responsibility of the ophthalmologist to refer or provide vision rehabilitation.

    To watch the video and find re­sources on low vision, visit aao.org/low-vision.

    ACADEMY STORE

    Order the Practice Productivity and Profitability Webinar

    A recording of the Academy’s March 14 webinar, “Proven Tactics for Running a Successful Small Practice,” is available to order. This 60-minute webinar cov­ers how to significantly improve clinic flow, front desk and billing procedures, technician cross-training, and more by using lean management business procedures. It takes an inside look at Duke Eye Center’s most successful per­formance improvement project—and discusses how their lessons can be applied to your practice. You’ll also learn about the innovative business methodologies of lean (creating the greatest value by minimizing waste) and DMAIC (define, measure, analyze, improve, and control).

    Visit aao.org/aaoewebinars.

    Register for the 2017 MOC Exam Review Course

    Prepare for maintenance of certifica­tion (MOC) exams with the Academy’s MOC Exam Review Course. In a single weekend, Academy-selected teams of ophthalmic experts guide you through an in-depth review of Core Ophthalmic Knowledge and your choice of 1 or 2 practice emphasis areas. The course will be held July 21-23 at the Loews Chicago O’Hare Hotel in Rosemont, Ill.

    To register, visit aao.org/moc-course.

    Subscribe to Ophthalmology Retina

    The Academy’s Ophthalmology Retina, a new peer-reviewed journal focused exclusively on the latest advances in ret­ina, is now available for order. During 2017, Ophthalmology Retina will be issued bimonthly, after which it will be issued monthly. Academy members: Subscribe for $299/12 issues at store.aao.org/ophthalmology-retina.html. Nonmembers: Subscribe for $350/12 issues at aao.org/retinajournal.

    Commitment to Advocacy Award
    COMMITMENT TO ADVOCACY AWARD. University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics’ department of ophthalmology received the Academy’s Secretariat for State Affairs 3rd annual Commitment to Advocacy Award during the January Association of University Professors of Ophthalmology (AUPO) annual meeting in San Diego. Academy Secretary for State Affairs Kurt F. Heitman, MD, presented the honor to the department’s leadership: Keith D. Carter, MD, and Thomas A. Oetting, MD. This award recognizes a training department and its leadership for ongoing commitment and support of the Academy’s Advocacy Ambassador Program. This program is a collaboration with state and subspecialty societies, along with training programs, to support attendance by members in training at the Mid-Year Forum. “Drs. Carter and Oetting have demonstrated outstanding leadership and an ongoing commitment to promote the important role of advocating for patients and the profession to their residents,” said Dr. Heitman. From left to right: David W. Parke II, MD, Academy CEO; Dr. Carter; Dr. Oetting; and Dr. Heitman.

    MEMBERS AT LARGE

    Himalayan Cataract Project

    Academy members Sanduk Ruit, MD, and Geoffrey C. Tabin, MD, began the Himalayan Cataract Project (HCP) to eradicate as much unnecessary blind­ness as possible in their lifetimes. On Feb. 15, the HCP was named one of 8 semifinalists in 100&Change, a com­petition for a $100 million grant to fund a project that makes measurable progress toward solving a significant global problem. The winner will be announced later this year.

    Drs. Ruit and Tabin have proved that hospital-quality standards can be applied in areas that lack electricity and clean water. The HCP now funds and facilitates education and training, and it purchases equipment for local eye care professionals across Asia and sub-Saharan Africa. With its partners, it has screened and examined more than 7.2 million patients from 18 countries and performed more than 600,000 surgeries from 1995 to 2016. “The 100&Change grant could enable the Himalayan Cataract Project to reach the tipping point to eliminate needless blindness on a global scale,” said Dr. Tabin.

    Passages

    Gunter K. von Noorden, MD, distin­guished emeritus professor of ophthal­mology at Baylor College of Medicine and one of the foremost leaders in strabismus surgery, passed away on Feb. 11. He was 88.

    Dr. von Noorden’s experience of growing up in Nazi Germany had a profound effect on him, spurring him to attend medical school so that he could dedicate his life to helping others. He is best known for his classic textbook Binocular Vision and Oc­ular Motility: Theory and Management of Strabismus, regarded as the gold-standard text for ocular motility dis­orders for the past 30 years. In 2007, he published a memoir, From Berlin To Texas: Forging a Life from the Devasta­tion of War. He served as president of the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology, published 310 scientific papers, and authored 4 books. Dr. von Noorden presented 21 named lectures worldwide and received the Academy’s Jackson Memorial Lecture Award, the Franceschetti Prize, the Proctor Award, and the Bowman Medal.

    MEETING MATTERS

    AAO 2017: Sneak Peek

    Although AAO 2017 in New Orleans is still 7 months away, several key events are confirmed. For the Opening Session, Daniel F. Martin, MD, has been selected as the speaker for the Jackson Memorial Lecture. Dr. Martin, a renowned retina specialist, is chairman of the Cleveland Clinic Cole Eye Institute and the Bar­bara and A. Malachi Mixon III Institute Chair in Ophthalmology.

    In addition, several symposia are on the schedule:

    • Management of Chronic and Recur­rent Anterior Segment Disorders
    • Hot Topics for Minimizing Infections in Cataract Surgery
    • Medicare Access and CHIP Reautho­rization Act (MACRA): What the New Changes Mean to Your Patients and Your Practice
    • Recent Advances in Diabetic Retinop­athy
    • Current and Emerging Imaging Tools for Macular and Retinal Diseases

    Visit aao.org/2017.

    International Attendees

    Foreign travelers coming to the United States to attend conferences need a visitor visa, unless they qualify for entry under the Visa Waiver Program. For scientific conferences, visa applications should be made no later than 90 days prior to travel.

    Visit aao.org/visa.

    Organizing a Meeting in New Orleans?

    Would you like to hold an alumni, exhibitor, or ophthalmic society event during AAO 2017? The Academy can help you secure hotel meeting spaces.

    Visit aao.org/meetingspace.

    D.C. REPORT

    Academy’s Federal Legislative Agenda Takes Shape

    For the benefit of patients and the profession, the Academy seeks to leverage changes that will be made by the Trump administration to regulations and other health policies. The Academy’s priorities include the following:

    • Defending ophthalmology’s codes to preserve fair reimbursement to physicians
    • Positioning the Academy’s IRIS Registry to facilitate and improve quality patient care
    • Reducing regulatory burdens that interfere with the physician-patient relationship
    • Increasing federal and defense vision research funding

    The Academy is also working to maintain a strong line of commu­nication with the new Health and Human Services Secretary, Thomas E. Price, MD. During his time in Congress (as one of its few physi­cians), Dr. Price was an asset to and strong supporter of ophthalmolo­gy. The Academy believes that his new role in overseeing the nation’s health system will be strongly informed by his core belief in physi­cian-led health care.

    The Academy is also strengthening relationships with congressio­nal leaders on committees in Congress, especially those with over­sight of the Medicare program. By solidifying these bonds and pro­viding unbiased, patient-centered expertise, ophthalmology is poised for action when issues affecting the profession arise.

    Stay up-to-date on the Academy’s stances at aao.org/advocacy.