■ At press time, the American Academy of Ophthalmology and the American Academy of Optometry announced a joint initiative to prepare and support their members in delivering “the highest quality eye care,” said a press release issued by each organization. Leaders of both academies said that effective collaborative care will require coordination of education and standards of care between the professions. The organizations plan to formally launch the program in 2015.
■ AOAExcel, a subsidiary of the American Optometric Association, recently partnered with Healthcare Professional Funding to offer financing to optometrists looking to purchase equipment or acquire or start up a practice. For additional information, visit www.ExcelOD.com/practice-finance, or call (855) 944-2265.
■ Pharmaceutical company Akorn announced it has acquired from Merck & Co., Inc. the U.S. rights to AzaSite, COSOPT and COSOPT PF, for $52.8 million in cash. Akorn says it plans to ship COSOPT and COSOPT PF immediately and expects to begin shipping AzaSite in the first quarter of 2014.
■ The Vision Care Institute, an affiliate of Johnson & Johnson Vision Care, announced that 100,000 eyecare professionals have attended courses throughout its network of 14 sites worldwide. Since its 2004 launch, the Institute has offered more than 4,000 courses taught by 257 faculty members to accommodate attendees from 56 countries.
■ The American Optometric Association has launched the “See Clearly, America” public education campaign to highlight how doctors of optometry possess the required education, skills and training to provide quality eye care and assist in meeting America’s rising eyecare needs. The centerpiece of the campaign: www.AmericasEyeDoctors.com.