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O.D. Notebook - updated 6.28

News from AOA Optometry’s Meeting
 
  • Officers and trustees of the AOA took the oath of office at the organization’s recent annual meeting held in Denver. The 2018 to 2019 board of trustees include: Samuel D. Pierce, O.D., president; Barbara L. Horn, O.D., president-elect; William T. Reynolds, O.D., vice president; Robert C. Layman, O.D., secretary-treasurer; Christopher J. Quinn, O.D., immediate past president; along with trustees: James P. DeVleming, O.D., Robert L. Venner, O.D., Steven T. Reed, O.D., Jacqueline Bowen, O.D., Fred Farias III, O.D. and Lori L. Grover, O.D., PhD.
  • In addition to providing hours of CE, AOA’s annual meeting also honored several award recipients: David Redman, O.D., for optometrist of the year (Dr. Redman is also past president of the California Optometric Association); Matthew Jones, O.D., for young optometrist of the year; Carol Lovell, C.P.O.T., C.P.O.C., for paraoptometric of the year; Mark Swanson, O.D., for optometry educator of the year; and Joseph Mallinger, O.D., for distinguished service.
  • The AOA and Optometry Cares inducted the following optometrists into its Hall of Fame for exemplary optometric careers and service to the profession: David A. Cockrell, Irwin B. Suchoff and Lesley L. Walls.
  • Honorees of the CooperVision 2018 Best Practices program presented at a media roundtable in Denver, tackling a wide range of issues including telehealth, competition, consolidation, staffing and patient care, among others. Participants included Drs. Carrie Alfieri, McKinney, Texas; Carmen Castellano, St. Louis, Mo.; Stephen Cohen, Scottsdale, Ariz.; Mark Feder, Norwalk, Conn.; Shawna Kuntz, Livermore, Calif.; Bridgitte Shen Lee, Houston, Texas; Jonathan Micetich, Coal City, Ill.; Bradley Owens, Houston, Texas; Roxanna Potter, Sylvania, Ohio; and Jeff Ward, Highlands Ranch, Col.
  • Johnson & Johnson Vision announced that Acuvue Oasys with Transitions Light Intelligent Technology will be commercially available in first half of 2019. The two-week reusable, spherical contact lens provides vision correction and a photochromic filter that helps to continuously balance the amount of light entering the eye. The contact lens reduces exposure to bright light indoors and outdoors, including filtering blue light and blocking UV rays, according to J&J. It has received 510(k) clearance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and is indicated for the attenuation of bright light. In other news, Johnson & Johnson Vision announced a partnership with professional tennis player Madison Keyes, as part of the company’s global “See It Through” campaign. Ms. Keyes, who is currently ranked 10th by the World Tennis Association, will share her experiences with Acuvue contact lenses as part of the campaign.
  • NuSight Medical launched the NuLids System, a home-use medical device for the treatment of dry eye disease. Through a gentle massaging handheld device, the procedure stimulates, de-caps and rejuvenates the meibomian glands.
  • RightEye released its EyeQ Trainer, a computer-based vision rehabilitation program. RightEye.com.
  • Visioneering Technologies introduced NaturalVue Sphere 1 Day contact lenses with CleanComfort technology. The etalfilcon A lens is available in +4.00D to -12.00D in 0.25D steps. Vtvision.com.
  • Indiana Optometric Association named Jennifer Kohn, O.D., as its 2018 Young Optometrist of the Year. The association also honored OM’s former “Management Tip of the Week” editor, Dr. Neil Gailmard, with the Meritorious Service Award.
  • Registration for Neuro-Optometric Rehabilitation Association’s International Clinical Skills Pre-Conference, Sept. 20 to Sept. 21, and General Conference, Sept. 21 to Sept. 23, to take place in St. Louis, is now open at noravisionrehab.com. NORA announced it is offering up to 10 students and residents an opportunity to apply for a student grant to attend the conference. Applications are available at www.noravisionrehab.org.
  • NORA announced it is accepting nominations for the following awards: The Advancement of Neuro-Optometric Rehabilitation Award, which is presented to an individual or group that has demonstrated advancement in neuro-optometric rehabilitation; The Advancement of Sciences Award, which is presented for valued contribution to the science of neuro-optometric rehabilitation; Founding Father’s Award, presented to those who demonstrate a lifelong dedication to the concepts surrounding the human visual process.; William and Diana Ludlam Educators Award for the educator or institution best exemplifying service to the students and patients in the neuro-optometric rehabilitation effort. For further information visit www.noravisionrehab.org. Nominations are due by August 1, 2018. In related news, NORA also announced the launch of its redesigned website and new domain name, www.noravisionrehab.org.
  • The Vision Council has launched an Electronic Progressive Identifier Catalog (EPIC) of identifying marks engraved on progressive edition lenses. It is available in hard copy and digital formats. https://epic.thevisioncouncil.org/
Collaborative care
  • Glaukos Corp. received premarket approval from the FDA for its iStent inject trabecular micro-bypass system indicated for the reduction of IOP in adults who have mild to moderate primary open-angle glaucoma and are undergoing concomitant cataract surgery.
Companies
  • Bausch + Lomb has partnered with Tangible Science to coat B+L custom contact lenses in Tangible Science Hydra-PEG coating, which adds wettability and lubrication to contact lenses while also decreasing deposits, the company says. This will be used on several of the company’s Boston GP materials, Zenlens and Zen RC scleral lenses.
  • Compulink has announced the changing of its corporate name to Compulink Healthcare Solutions.
  • Studies by the CooperVision Inc. have revealed some disconnections among the beliefs and practices of eye care practitioners regarding silicone hydrogel lenses. Among the examples provided: A total of 68% of consumers expect their eye care practitioner to recommend the healthiest option, regardless of cost, however doctors cite cost as a challenge when considering prescribing silicone hydrogel lenses. The full report and findings will be released later this summer.
  • Digital Eye Lab has been honored for the second year in a row as VSP Optics’ Unity Independent Lab of the Year.
  • Essilor ranked 52nd in Forbes 100 Most Innovative Companies ranking for 2018. Additionally, Essilor of America has brought back its Ultimate Lens Package. It’s available to independent eyecare professionals from July 16 through Dec. 31. Visit essilorultimatelens.com for details.
  • IVeena has received orphan drug designation from the FDA for IVMED-80 for the treatment of keratoconus. It is an eye drop for crosslinking of the cornea.
  • Johnson & Johnson Vision has partnered with Madison Keys, a U.S. tennis player, in the company’s See It Through campaign. See the campaign on Instagram @acuvue or use #SeeItThrough on social media.
  • Transitions Optical has teamed up with fashion designer Christian Siriano as a brand ambassador for its new campaign Light Under Control. Follow Transitions Optical social channels for more information, or visit Transitions.com/style. The company also offers a Transitions Snapchat Lens Kit. It contains the tools needed to market and showcase the company’s virtual demonstration of Transitions Light Intelligent Lenses, including popsocket, stickers and displays. Order your kit here: http://bit.ly/2KpXCBQ
New products and services
  • Safilo has released limited edition MaxMara KB/UB sunglasses. With only 1,000 pieces created, the sunglasses were made in collaboration with contemporary German artist Kerstin Bratsch and the collective United Brothers. The sunglasses feature geometric lines, soft rubber temples, a natural stone coating and mirroring.
Nonprofit
  • Envision’s conference, Level Up, which provides high school students who are blind or visually impaired with skills and tools, is ongoing, beginning June 26 and continuing through July 1. In other news, Envision bestowed its 2018 Envision-Atwell Award for research in low vision and low-vision rehabilitation to Yingzi Xiong, a research associate from University of Minnesota’s Minnesota Lab for Low Vision Research. The award comes with a $1,000 stipend.
  • Lighthouse Guild’s President and CEO Alan R. Morse, J.D., Ph.D., submitted for publication in Ophthalmology a piece on how to address the cognitive and psychological concerns in treating patients who have vision loss. The piece is titled “What Can I Do to Help My Patient When I think There is Nothing Else I Can Do?” To read the piece, visit http://bit.ly/2Kd8CmX.
Research Notes
  • Denatured lysozyme can have a negative effect on human corneal epithelial cells (HCE), as both a decrease in metabolic activity and an increase in the release of inflammatory cytokines occurred after HCEC exposure to denatured lysozyme, reveals April’s Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science. Given this finding, determining ways to minimize corneal exposure to denatured protein may improve contact lens biocompatibility, potentially resulting in improved ocular biocompatibility, the study’s researchers say.

June's industry news and notables 

Alliances
  • Healthy Eyes Advantage (HEA), an independent practitioner solutions group, named Jim McGreen to executive chairman, Lorie Lippiatt, O.D., to senior vice president of professional strategies, Stephanie Lucas to senior vice president of sales and marketing, and Shani Lenard, vice president of HEA services. These individuals join a leadership team that includes: Andrew Alcorn, executive vice president, Diane John, vice president of marketing, Shirleen Prescott, vice president of operations, and Josh Mesirow, vice president of vendor relations. 
  • PECAA members raised $21,397 for the organization’s community service initiative PECAA Gives. The beneficiary of the proceeds is Beads of Courage, a Tucson-based non-profit that assists children coping with serious illness. Additionally, members of the alliance worked at VSP Global Eyes of Hope 45-foot mobile clinic, which traveled to Tucson prior to the organization’s annual meeting. 
Associations
  • The American Academy of Optometry Foundation announced the 2018 Johnson & Johnson Vision Award of Excellence in Contact Lens Patient Care. The fourth-year students include: Kellie Abe,Ayah Ahamed,Pei Chi Chain,Jonathan Chen, Judson Chevalier,Vivian Chung, Camille Fodi, Madeleine Hacker,Jordan Keeney,Lavang Lee, Kristi Lew,Karlee Muller,Samantha Myers,Ramya Natarajan,Brij Patel,Nguyet-Nhi Phan,Sara Seibert, Brittany Strebig, Jordyn Stevens, Victoria Stewart, Molly Tipton, Kimberly Weisenbergerand Melissa Zaleski.
  • Think About Your Eyes is partnering with professional athlete and lifestyle expert Laila Ali to promote the national public awareness campaign about the importance of scheduling an annual eye exam with an optometrist. 
  • The Vision Council has named David Pierson as staff liaison to the recently created Optical Retail Division.   
 
Companies
  • ABB Optical Group has agreed to acquire Glimpse Live, a data and analytics provider for eye care professionals and other healthcare practitioners. Additionally, the company is offering a workshop in scleral lenses, presented by Mile Brujic, O.D., on Aug. 11, at the Concord Hilton in California. In other news, the company hosted its national sales meeting in Orlando, focusing on the growth of the eye care industry. More than 150 sales professionals were in attendance. In other news, Primary Eyecare Network, a division of ABB Optical Group, presents its Eyes of America Summer Seminar on Sunday, Aug. 19 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. in Mason, Ohio. To register, visit primaryeye.net, or call (800) 444-9230. The company also was honored by The South Florida Chapter of the Association for Corporate Growth for the company’s continued outstanding revenue growth as a large company.             The group is celebrating the fifth anniversary of the ABB Cares Program. In this time it has awarded more than $50,000 in grants to non-profit organizations. To nominate your charity for this year’s program, fill out an application, which can be submitted as early as Aug. 1. 
  • Aerie Pharmaceuticals has appointed William Coppola as intellectual property counsel to oversee intellectual property matters both domestically and internationally on behalf of the company. 
  • AllAboutVision.com has unveiled a library of more than 100 patient education articles for Spanish-speaking visitors. The translated articles on eye health and vision correction can be found at allaboutvision.com/es/ and have generated more than 2.6 million page views in 2018.   
  • Alcon has launched the digital campaign, “See What You’re Missing,” to spread education about cataract. The campaign is meant to spur people to action using FOMO (fear of missing out) that can be associated with cataracts. These efforts are added to the company’s multi-year MyCataracts educational initiative, found at My Cataracts by Alcon on Facebook. In addition, the company has launched its “See Near and Far” campaign. The direct-to-consumer initiative increases consumer awareness of multifocal contact lens options and encourages consumers to visit an eye care professional. The campaign will include television spots on major networks, national print and digital media. SeeNearAndFar.com. 
  • Allergan and the International Council of Ophthalmology announced the inaugural winner of the duo’s advanced research fellowship: Dr. Emilio de Almeida Torres Netto, who is located in Brazil. He will receive $50,000 to support his research looking at factors modulating the biomechanics of corneal tissue. 
  • AllAboutVision.comhas unveiled a library of more than 100 patient education articles for Spanish-speaking visitors. The translated articles on eye health and vision correction can be found at allaboutvision.com/es/ and have generated more than 2.6 million page views in 2018.  
  • Avedro Inc. is enrolling patients in its Phase 3 clinical trial to evaluate the safety and efficacy of an epithelium-on corneal collagen cross-linking procedure to treat patients with progressive keratoconus. It is a multicenter, randomized, controlled study of 275 patients at about 20 sites in the United States.
  • Bausch + Lomb has enrolled the first patient in a clinical trial studying the efficacy and safety of an investigational trifocal IOL, enVisita MX60EF. The study is to support the company’s Premarket Approval application with the FDA. 
  • CooperVision Inc unveiled the Best Practices Eyedea Lab, a think tank event that that will take place 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. on June 21 at the exhibit hall (booth 316) at Optometry’s Meeting in Denver. All attendees are invited to stop by. 
  • EssilorLuxottica will host its first shareholders’ meeting for the entity on July 25, in anticipation of the completion of the combination of the two entities. If the combination is not complete, the meeting will be delayed. 
  • Eye Designs Group has launched a new website, offering quick access to information on the custom ophthalmic environments and optical display design company. View it at eyedesigns.com. 
  • Eye Health America has announced that Phillip Isham has joined the company’s leadership team as chief development officer. 
  • Eyelet-Eye has enlisted the help of Tom Shone to assist its sales and marketing efforts. The company is the manufacturer of Eaglet Eye Surface Profiler. 
  • EyePromise has appointed Andreas Wolf as president and Peggy Stohr as CFO.
  • Nicox has partnered with Ironwood Pharmaceuticals Inc. to combine Ironwood’s expertise in soluble guanylate cyclase and Nicox’s proprietary nitric oxide-donating research platform to generate novel compounds to identify potential new therapies for the treatment of certain ophthalmic conditions.
  • Opternative has partnered with LD Vision Group to provide access to online prescription renewal technology on the company’s websites OnlineVisionTest.com and LensDiscounters.com. 
  • The CLX System, a contact lens management and marketing solution, has released a customizable contact lens subscription service. It is available to the system’s premium users and allows O.D.s to offer an automatic replenishment to patients. Visit CLXsystem.com. 
  • Kala Pharmaceuticals, in preparation for its launch of Inveltys, a twice daily steroid drop in development for the treatment of inflammation and pain following ocular surgery, announced the following hires: Kathleen McCann Kline, vice president of marketing; James Patnoe, vice president of commercial operations and pricing; Carl Rennie, executive director of account management; Patrick Bedell, executive director of trade and alternate channels; and Lynette Zickl, director of commercial analytics and forecasting.
  • SynergEyesand Brien Holden Vision Institute have announced a partnership in the exclusive worldwide manufacturing of design technologies from the institute and bolstering the company’s hybrid contact lens platform. In related news, the company is hosting a webinar series on specialty contact lenses, featuring Louise Sclafani, O.D., F.A.A.O., Melissa Barnett, O.D., F.A.A.O., F.S.L.S., Christine Sindt, O.D., F.A.A.O., F.S.L.S., and Jeffrey Sonsino, O.D., F.A.A.O. Registration information can be found at https://info.synergeyes.com/synergeyes-webinar-series-2018
  • Topcon Medical Systems has welcomed Brett Julian to its sales team as national sales manager.
  • Transitions Optical has announced dates for its Transitions Academy 2019, to take place Feb. 3 to Feb. 6 at JW Marriott Grande Lakes in Orlando, Fla. To earn an invitation to the event: become a finalist for the company‘s Innovation Award (accepting nominations at TransitionsPRO.com/Awards in October); attend as a guest of your lens supplier; become a Transitions Change Agent (more information at TransitionsPRO.com/ChangeAgent); request a spot and/or nominate someone to attend at TransitionsAcademy.com; and, join the speaker’s bureau (interested persons can email cservice@transitions.com). 
  • Registration is now open for Vision Expo West, taking place Sept. 26 to 29 at the Sands Expo and Convention Center in Las Vegas. Visit west.visionexpo.com.
  • Witchita Optometry has purchased two additional optometry practices, Mulvane Vision Care and Wichita Vision Care, also in Kansas. 
New products and services
  • Bausch + Lomb now offers Ocuvite Blue Light eye vitamins, a nutritional supplement that includes lutein and zeaxanthin. The formula is intended to help protect eyes from the blue light that reaches the macula. Additionally, the company’s ULTRA for Astigmatism is now available in a cylinder power of -2.75D across all power ranges in the portfolio, from +6.00D to -9.00D. The company has also received pre-market approval from the FDA for its enVista toric MX60T, a hydrophobic acrylic IOL for astigmatism correction. And finally, the company has introduced Soothe Xtra Protection Preservative Free lubricant eyedrops to its portfolio. The OTC drop is available at major retailers. 
  • Blanchard Contact Lenses has received FDA clearance for therapeutic applications of the company’s Onefit family of scleral lenses manufactured in Contamac’s Optimum Extra and Optimum Extreme as well as Hexa 100 materials. 
  • Johnson & Johnston Vision has received FDA 510(k) approval for its iDESIGN Refractive Studio, which uses topography and wavefront-guided technology to measure the inside and outside of the eye for the purpose of delivering a personalized LASIK procedure. 
  • Novartis has launched FocalView, an ophthalmic research platform. The app is created with ResearchKit and aids researchers in collecting data from patients. It is available for download in Apple’s App Store. 
  • Optovue has received FDA 510(k) clearance of AngioAnalytics, a measurement technology for OCTA, and its 3D projection artifact removal software, 3D PAR. Both are commercially available.  Additionally, the company received expanded FDA 510(k) clearance for non-contact, quantitative measurements of the epithelial and stromal layers of the cornea, or epithelial thickness mapping. The clearance adds a 9 mm ETM scan to the previously available 6 mm map. Optovue’s ETM is now available in the Avanti Widefield OCT system. 
  • Recihert Technologies' Phoropter VRX how has virtual live demo experience, which allows the phoropter to be used via a live, one-on-one video conferencing feed. The phoroptor also integrates into your office by connecting wirelessly to EMR systems, pre-test and acuity devices. For more on these capabilities, see Dr. Marc Bloomenstein’s “Diagnostic Focus” in June’s magazine, or visit http://bit.ly/2JR6TU7.
  • Transitions Optical now provides its Transitions Signature lenses in four new style colors — sapphire, amethyst, amber and emerald — and Transitions XTRActive style mirrors in seven colors — gold, silver shadow, red, pink, blue and green. The offerings will be available July 16. 
  • Weave, a communications tool for optometry and other medical professions, has released a Team Chat. The feature launches on desktop and mobile platforms and allows for secure communication among team members. It’s capable of holding both individual and group conversations. 
Nonprofit
  • Centre for Ocular Research & Education(CORE) and McDougall Communications received the 2018 Silver Anvil, an award bestowed by the Public Relations Society of America in recognition of outstanding achievement by industry leaders, agencies, small business, non-profits and major government agencies.  
  • Envision held a ribbon cutting ceremony to unveil the William L. Hudson BVI Workforce Innovation Center, a partnership between it and LCI, a company whose mission is to provide meaningful employment for people who are blind. 
  • Foundation Fighting Blindness, along with CheckedUp, a specialty point of care company, announced an initiative to deliver actionable educational information regarding blinding retinal disease across CheckedUp’s nationwide eye care network. CheckedUp’s platform includes technologies, such as Explorer Waiting Room TV, which builds awareness and provides education to patients as they wait for their appointments. 
  • Lighthouse Guild has granted scholarships to the following students, who are legally blind: Brielle Cayer, Tian Crossnoe, Joseph Luther Fuller, Isaac Heiman, Trisha Kulkarni, Jack McPadden, Mausam Mehta, Mark Ruoff, Sophia Vilim, Gillian Ward and Mary McLaughlin. 
People
  • Iowa City optometrist Matt Houck is a contestant on MasterChef. Competing in the current season nine, Dr. Houck can be seen in-action on Wednesdays at 8 p.m. on Fox. You can also follow him on Instagram @DinnerWithChefHouck. 
Research Notes
  • Strabismus and amblyopia may affect the speed with which children can take standardized tests, according to JAMA Ophthalmology.  
Schools
  • Illinois College of Optometry has appointed Dr. Mark Colip as the sixth president. He replaces Dr. Arol Augsburger, who retires after 16 years as president. The appointment is effective Aug. 6. 
  • Dawn Rigney has been  been named vice president of institutional advancement at the State University of New York College of Optometry and executive director of the Optometric Center of New York, the college’s affiliated foundation, effective May 17. 
For more O.D. Noteook items find May's listing here