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A celebration of Rising Stars who have a bright vision for the future of eye care

Seven young Fellows from the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Ophthalmologists (RANZCO) were chosen as Rising Stars in celebration of their incredible work and dedication in the field of eye care services.

These ophthalmologists are among more than 30 Rising Stars across ophthalmology, optometry, low vision and rehabilitation who all got to share their vision for the future of Eye Health and Vision Care at an event at Parliament House on Tuesday 12 September. The Rising Stars event is an initiative of Vision 2020 Australia and its member organisations to showcase the sector’s leading early career professionals to parliamentarians and policy decision makers.

Andrew White, Christine Younan, Simon Skalicky, Clare Fraser, Mark Chiang, Andrew Symons and Jane Khan are the inspirational RANZCO Fellows who have been recognised as Rising Stars, as chosen by professional organisations.

Associate Professor Andrew White, Head of Department of Ophthalmology at Westmead Hospital has been working on a project over the last few years which makes better use of the optometrists in Australia. This project is a collaboration between optometrists and ophthalmologists, with optometrists undertaking initial screening and assessment for glaucoma and then ophthalmologists reviewing the results and recommendations. This then allows more time for ophthalmologists to see people who need help urgently.

Dr Christine Younan, who is an ophthalmologist at Sydney Eye Hospital and Westmead Hospital, is passionate about ensuring all Australians are able to access equitable ophthalmic care. Dr Younan says “As eye doctors we need to do everything we can to ensure that our patients are able to access the best treatments in a timely manner.”

Dr Simon Skalicky, Visiting Medical Officer, Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital and Royal Melbourne Hospital; and Clinical Senior Lecturer at the Universities of Melbourne and Sydney, would like to see a future of eye care where the clinician empowers the patient with knowledge to help them make informed choices about their own treatment.
Associate Professor Clare Fraser, Associate Professor of Neuro-ophthalmology and Ophthalmic Education, University of Sydney, specialises in helping patients who don’t fit neatly into just neurology or ophthalmology. A/Prof Fraser Is working on creating a collaborative care approach to the diagnosis and management of concussion.

Dr Mark Chiang, Consultant Ophthalmologist at Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital and Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital, is passionate about early diagnosis and treatment of preventable blindness, especially for glaucoma. Dr Chiang would like to encourage more collaborative eye care between optometrists and ophthalmologists to eliminate avoidable blindness.
Associate Professor Andrew Symons, Head of the Department of Ophthalmology at Royal Melbourne Hospital runs a collaborative clinic with the University of Melbourne Department of Optometry and Vision Sciences. This clinic enables optometry students to work with ophthalmologists in a supportive educational environment and has resulted in improved access to services. A/Prof Symons says that ophthalmic work is enormously rewarding. “I am fascinated by the intellectual challenges in vision science and in service provision.”

Dr Jane Khan, Consultant Ophthalmologist at Royal Perth Hospital, is currently seeking to tackle the efficient use of the public sector resources to provide state-of-the-art eye care in Western Australia.  

For more information please contact Josie Faunce at RANZCO 02 9690 1001 or at jfaunce@ranzco.edu

About RANZCO

The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Ophthalmologists (RANZCO) is the professional body for ophthalmologists — eye doctors — in Australia and New Zealand. The College acts as the voice of the profession for its 1600 members and is responsible for the training, examining and professional development of Ophthalmologists. Our mission is to drive improvements in eye healthcare in Australia, New Zealand and the Asia-Pacific region through continuing exceptional training, education, research and advocacy.