(For previous mailings of ICO Notes, see: www.icoph.org/news/ico_notes.html.)
Dear ICO Members and Friends,
The ICO made great strides as we gathered at last month's American Academy of Ophthalmology/Pan-American Association of Ophthalmology Joint Meeting in San Francisco. It was a productive week as the ICO Board, Advisory Committee and other committees and task forces met to discuss important business alongside an outstanding scientific program.
I share a few brief highlights with you here, and will send more news in future issues of ICO Notes and the ICO Leader Letter. Additional information will also available on our Web site, archive.icoph.org.
The ICO Board of Trustees met October 23 in San Francisco, for the first time since 2008 at the World Ophthalmology Congress (WOC) in Hong Kong. The agenda featured important topics and a few noteworthy decisions:
New ICO Examination: The Board approved development of a new advanced examination, which will allow the successful candidate to use a post nominal acronym. The Board also approved changing the name from "Assessments" to "Examinations," and more detailed information on the Examinations is now available at www.icoexams.org.
New ICO Identity and Information Technology: The Board approved plans for future use of information technology, including an updated Web site (icoph.org) and database.
ICO Member Dues: The Board adopted policies on dues collection and the definition of developing countries. ICO member dues not paid before June 1 will result in loss of membership Benefits. Countries in the bottom 70 of the current UN Human Development Index will be eligible for reduced dues. We will send details on these policies to ICO Members later this month.
Future World Ophthalmology Congresses (WOC): The Board approved a revised policy on future WOCs that makes selection of the host contingent on adoption of a Statement of Expectations between the ICO and the host. Future WOCs are set for 2012 in Abu Dhabi and 2014 in Tokyo.
ICO Financial Reserves: 25 percent of annual budgeted expenses will be used to safeguard the ICO in the event of a major loss of income or other unforeseen developments, including unexpected expenses or legal obligations and to take advantage of critical opportunities.
Asia Pacific Academy of Ophthalmology: The ICO will co-sponsor the March 2011 Congress in Sydney (www.apaosydney2011.com), which will be hosted by the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Ophthalmologists.
These are a few of the outcomes of this recent meeting, and more discussion, actions, and other business will be forthcoming. In addition, look for news from the meetings of ICO committees and task forces in future e-mail and Web communications.
Historically, ICO Officers and many members of the Board of Trustees have served for two four-year terms, resulting in a major change in leadership every eight years.
To avoid the loss of leadership continuity and to assure that there are excellent candidates available for Board positions when current members retire, the ICO Officers and Strategic Planning Committee have recommended creating a new succession plan.
The proposed plan calls for rotating the terms of ICO Board Members so that there is regular, smaller annual turnover instead of large changes every four to eight years. The plan also includes the definition of an ideal pathway to ICO leadership by cultivating new leaders from national, subspecialty and supranational societies; as well as from within the ICO.
We hope a new succession plan will make it possible for the ICO to continue developing strong leadership well into the future, thus widening involvement in the prevention of visual loss.
Dr. Hillel Lewis convened his first meeting as president of the ICOFoundation on October 25. He welcomed new Board members Mr. Kevin Buehler, CEO of Alcon, and ICO Treasurer Professor Hugh Taylor, and honored past president Dr. Bradley Straatsma with the announcement of the new Bradley R. Straatsma Educational Fund.
The ICOFoundation raises funds to support the programs and activities of the ICO, and is in a healthy financial position to continue doing so. Reports from currently funded programs included an update on the ICO/Alcon Ophthalmology Training Center in Slovenia, and the announcement of the first two Helmerich Fellowship recipients.
The ICO presented a funding request for new initiatives, including future phases of the ICO Information Technology Plan (e-learning and society services) and Refocusing Ophthalmic Education (including conferences for educators prior to supranational congresses).
As we announced in last month's ICO Leader Letter, Dr. Francisco Contreras of Peru is the recipient of the 2009 G.O.H. Naumann Award for Leadership and Global Eye Care.
The G.O.H. Naumann Award, established in honor of past ICO President Gottfried "Fritz" Naumann, MD, is given annually to an ophthalmologist who has made a significant contribution to global eye care in his or her community.
Dr. Contreras accepted the Award at the ICO Board of Trustees Meeting in San Francisco with a presentation on his life and work in ophthalmology. You can download his presentation on the ICO Web site: archive.icoph.org/ppt/FCNaumannAwardOct2009.pps (PPT – 11.7 MB).
Please join me in congratulating Dr. Contreras on this award, which celebrates his career-long dedication to preserving and restoring vision for the people of Peru, South America, and the world.
With warm regards,
Bruce Spivey, MD, MS, MEd
President, International Council of Ophthalmology
Copyright © 2013 International Council of Ophthalmology. All rights reserved.