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Campaign to focus on orthoptists’ skills

28/02/2018By Matthew Woodley • Staff Journalist
Eyecare professionals and the general public are being asked to “discover the depths of orthoptics” as part of this year’s Orthoptics Awareness Week (OAW) campaign.

The annual promotion is running between March 5–9, and each day will highlight a different eye condition that orthoptists routinely help to diagnose, treat and manage. It will also feature facts and statistics on these conditions, and encourage people to engage in the week via the social media hashtag #OAW2018.


"As a small profession uniquely placed to provide expert help in the diagnosis, management and rehabilitation of many eye disorders we need to promote these special areas of interest to the wider public."
Marion Rivers, Orthoptics Australia president

While they only represent a small portion of Australia’s eyecare sector, orthoptists help diagnose vision impaired children and adults, while they also contribute to developing technology such as the bionic eye and new treatments for age-related macular degeneration (AMD).

Orthoptics Australia president Ms Marion Rivers told Insight OAW presented an important opportunity for orthoptists to promote their work to their patients and the general public.

“As a small profession uniquely placed to provide expert help in the diagnosis, management and rehabilitation of many eye disorders we need to promote these special areas of interest to the wider public,” Rivers said.

“With an increasing number of people in the community with low vision due to disease such as AMD, diabetic retinopathy, and visual disturbance such as diplopia after stroke, orthoptists are able to provide investigation and management for better patient outcomes. This enables people to continue to work, enjoy leisure pursuits, live independently or even return to driving.”

“If we can raise awareness of the profession and encourage our colleagues to refer patients for investigation and management then people of all ages with visual problems will benefit from the understanding and management that an orthoptic assessment can provide,” she added.

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