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RANZCO Fellows honoured by the APAO

RANZCO Fellows Dr Cathy Green and A/Prof Andrew Chang received awards recognising their long-standing service to eye health in the Asia-Pacific region at the recent Asia-Pacific Academy of Ophthalmology (APAO) Congress held in Taipei from 24 – 27 March.


Dr Cathy Green received the Nakajima Award, which is presented to individuals who are actively involved in international activities that assist in the development of ophthalmology, particularly in relation to the prevention of blindness, ophthalmic service and research.

“I was extremely surprised and delighted to be nominated. My involvement in international development and ophthalmic education adds an enormous amount of stimulation and enjoyment to an already fascinating career. I get enormous satisfaction from seeing the difference contributions at a systemic level can make and I love the opportunities of getting to know truly talented and inspiring people. The continuing learning and personal growth are reward enough, so being acknowledged by my colleagues in this way makes me feel extremely fortunate,” said Dr Green.

Dr Green’s lecture ‘Harnessing the Power of One: Think Global, Act Local’ focused on the effectiveness and outcomes of ophthalmologists receiving formal training in skills such as leadership, advocacy and education. “Prof Nakajima is a visionary Japanese ophthalmologist who was instrumental in leading the development of ophthalmology in Japan after WWII. He was a researcher, educator and advocate, and played a key role in establishing the WHO Western Pacific Collaborating Centre for the Prevention of Blindness. My lecture focused on how although we ophthalmologists make a difference one patient at a time, if we ensure we are also good educators and teachers and continue to advocate for our patients, our sphere of influence is so much greater. I also showcased the education development work RANZCO has led in the Pacific and Cambodia, as well as the success of the APAO Leadership Development Program,” said Dr Green.

Dr Green is the convenor and designer of the RANZCO Leadership Development Program (LDP), which aims to develop and enhance leadership skills for ophthalmologists in Australia and New Zealand. She is an APAO LDP Program Director and has participated as invited faculty for leadership programs including the Royal College of Ophthalmologists of Thailand and the Philippine Academy of Ophthalmology. Dr Green has provided eye care and teaching in countries such as Cambodia, Fiji, Nepal, Myanmar and Timor Leste.

A/Prof Andrew Chang received the Distinguished Service Award, which is presented to ophthalmologists of APAO’s member organizations for their distinguished service to improving ophthalmology in their countries or tariff territories.

A/Prof Andrew Chang was delighted to have been nominated for this award. “I am grateful for opportunities to promote education and networking between our Asia-Pacific retinal ophthalmologists. I share this acknowledgment with the support of RANZCO Fellows and our regional colleagues through the Asia-Pacific Vitreoretinal Society.”

The APVRS was formed in 2006 to create a platform for academic exchange for retinal specialists. The late Prof Yasuo Tano was the founding President and was instrumental in the early success of the Society. Under the continued leadership of Prof Ian Constable and the APVRS Council, the Society has grown stronger with each year.

“I was fortunate for the privilege to represent Australia as Council Member in 2006. It has been challenging to serve as Scientific Secretary for the past three years but fulfilling to interact with our neighbouring colleagues. We learn so much from their clinical and research perspectives and experiences.”

“Each year the APVRS Congress is held in a different country in the Asia-Pacific region, and we all were very excited that Sydney won the bid to host the meeting in 2015.”

The Congress was co-hosted and strongly supported by the RANZCO NSW Branch and the ANZSRS. A mixture of 42 local and international scientific coordinators of 17 symposia, 100 invited speakers and 1100 delegates filled the congress venue with “warmth and buzz.”

The APVRS is now in its 10th year and continues to sponsor symposia at numerous international meetings including EURETINA, APAO and the AAO.

The 10th APVRS will be held from 8-10 December 2016 in Bangkok, Thailand. It will be held in conjunction with the 38th annual academic meeting of the Royal College of Ophthalmologists of Thailand.

The 31st APAO Congress was held in Taipei with more than 5,000 attendees and nearly 800 speakers. Australian and New Zealand Fellows were actively involved, including representation on the scientific program committee.

Last updated: November 29, 2018

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