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Membership and Benefits

With over 180 national, regional, and subspecialty Member societies from all over the world, the International Council of Ophthalmology (ICO) is a dynamic and global community.  The ICO only offers Membership on a society level at this time.  Find out if your regional society is an ICO Member.

Download the ICO Member Society Benefits:

Please contact us if you have any questions about ICO Membership at .

ICO Member Society Benefits

Support the ICO’s efforts to preserve and restore vision around the world:

  • Your society dues directly sustain programs and doctors working to improve ophthalmological health on a global scale. The ICO is working to build a “World Alliance for Sight” by leading, stimulating, and supporting the efforts of ophthalmologic societies, eye departments, and related organizations worldwide to enhance ophthalmic education and eye care.

Enjoy discounted registration pricing for WOCs:

  • Individual ophthalmologist members of ICO Member societies are offered discounted pricing on registration for the World Ophthalmology Congress® (WOC) of the ICO.

Take part in the ICO General Assembly with the right to vote and recommend new initiatives:

  • Join other national and subspecialty societies to set the agenda for the future of international ophthalmology.

Be represented at the World Ophthalmology Congress®:

  • Receive a free, complimentary registration to the WOC (approximate value US$700.00) for your society’s ICO representative.
  • Participate in small discussion groups at the General Assembly on enhancing eye care, sharing ideas with other ophthalmologists from around the world, and helping to build a world alliance for sight.

Join with other ophthalmic societies to influence and help set priorities and policy for eye care:

  • Select an advocate from your society to work with the ICO on the new World Health Organization Action Plan and the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness global initiative, VISION 2020: The Right to Sight.
  • Influence policies and funding for eye care by speaking as one voice for ophthalmology.
  • Participate in team building and leadership skills programs, such as the annual World Ophthalmology Roundtable on Leadership Development (WORLD) to gain insight from international leaders.

Offer additional education resources to your members:    

  • Take advantage of free education resources available through ICO websites, and
  • Invite ICO leaders to speak at your congress.

Give your younger members an advantage to be considered for ICO Fellowships and when taking ICO Examinations:

  • Candidates from low-resource countries whose societies are ICO Members are awarded additional points on the application for all ICO Fellowships.
  • ICO Examinations candidates whose societies are ICO Members receive a registration discount and a complimentary Foundation Assessment when applying for any of the ICO Standard Examinations.

As a Member subspecialty society, participate in the development of the Scientific Program of the WOC and in other education programs:

  • Develop symposia related to your members’ areas of expertise at the WOC.
  • Propose members of your society to serve on ICO education committees and provide input to other education programs.

Receive updates of the latest news and developments in international ophthalmology, and share your society updates with other societies:

  • Learn the latest about what is happening on pertinent eye care issues from the monthly ICO Insight.
  • Receive targeted mailings on specific topics, news, and events of importance to ICO Member societies.

Share your society's latest news and events

  • The ICO looks forward to receiving news and events from our Member societies to share with our global network at

Promote your Society’s Upcoming Congresses and Programs

  • Societies are invited to send letter-sized event flyers or postcards for display in the ICO booth at each WOC.
  • Submitted ICO Member society events, news, and resources are featured in the respective area(s) of the ICO website and appear next to your society profile.  They may also be advertised through ICO media channels.

ICO program highlights & accomplishments that your dues support:

View ICO Membership Criteria:

Apply for ICO Membership:

Questions? Please contact the ICO via

Download Member Benefits (PDF file: 635 KB)

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