Global Member Newsletter

Global Member Newsletter January 2019


NEW It’s our 40th Birthday and you’re all invited!

2019 will be a memorable year for IACLE as we celebrate our 40th Anniversary. We look forward to your active participation in celebrations around the world. As the year begins, we have released four new videos and messages charting the history of IACLE, its achievements and its impact on contact lens education over the past four decades.

CLICK ON EACH OF THE IMAGES BELOW to view these videos and look out for more details of the 40th celebrations on our website here

NEW IACLE releases first account of its early history

IACLE office bearers, members and staff have helped prepare a history of the early days of the association, from its founding meeting in Monte Carlo in November 1979. Around 16 contact lens educators attended that first meeting and agreed to form a new international organization for contact lens educators to share educational materials. The Early Years: 1979 -1993 records these developments and those closely involved at the time. 

Read about the early days of IACLE here

NEW Indian educator wins first IACLE Image of the Year

Congratulations to FIACLE Premjit Bhakat of Manipal Academy of Higher Education in India, winner of the 2018 Image of the Year. Premjit’s image shows dimple veiling in a steep ortho-K lens fit. Image of the Month was launched in January 2018 to highlight members’ photographic skills and build a new annual resource. The 39-slide 2018 IACLE Image Collection is available for teaching purposes exclusively to members and includes a description of each PPT slide. Premjit wins a year’s IACLE membership and a $US100 Amazon voucher. Well done! 

Access Member Login here and find the 2018 collection under Image Gallery

Deadline approaches for 2019 IACLE Awards

Could you soon be travelling to a major international meeting as a winner of the prestigious IACLE Contact Lens Educator of the Year Awards – sponsored by CooperVision – or IACLE Travel Awards? Thursday 31 January is the final date for applications for this year’s awards. To mark our 40th year seven awards will be presented, more than ever before.

Read how winning an IACLE Travel Award was a life-changing experience for Eman Alzghuol here

Click here to apply for IACLE Travel Awards and here for the Educator Awards


All members should now have received notices to renew their annual membership. Access to our full range of membership benefits –including the New IACLE Contact Lens Course – is only available to IACLE members. Membership expires when payment is not received.  If you have not received your renewal notice, please contact your local IACLE office.

NEW This year you can also make an additional voluntary donation to mark IACLE’s 40th year and be acknowledged on our website. 


Meet Dr Elise Kramer, optometrist at the Miami Contact Lens Institute/ Weston Contact Lens Institute in Florida, USA. Elise specializes in anterior segment and ocular surface disease, contact lenses, scleral lenses, orthokeratology and myopia management. ‘IACLE has helped me by giving me amazing resources for contact lens education, by constantly challenging me to grow professionally, to learn more and keep up to date with contact lens design and technology to best educate my students,’ says Elise. ‘In addition to learning theory, students are still trying to master their clinical skills. It’s important to be patient with them and remember that, not too long ago, we were in their shoes!’ Outside work, Elise loves to travel, discover new cultures and learn new languages – so far mastering five: English, French, Spanish, Italian and Hebrew!

WOULD YOU LIKE TO INTRODUCE YOURSELF TO IACLE MEMBERS WORLDWIDE? We’re looking for more members to take part in Meet a Member. Contact your regional / country coordinator here for details.


Anitha cuts the first cake to mark our 40th

In contrast to our usual clinical photography, this month’s image shows FIACLE Anitha Aravind from Chennai, India, who baked a cake saying Happy 40th IACLE. Anitha is pictured cutting the cake watched by delegates at an IACLE India meeting late last year. More cakes to follow at meetings around the world throughout 2019!

WE’RE NOW STARTING THE 2019 IACLE IMAGE COLLECTION. Download a submission form to add your image to our collection here.


NEW The global market and international prescribing trends

Worldwide the contact lens market exceeded US$8.5bn in 2018 and has grown by 4%-6% annually for the past nine years, according to the Contact Lenses 2018 report in the January issue of Contact Lens Spectrum. Editor Dr Jason J Nichols cites ‘the myopia initiative within the ophthalmic community’ as the Contact Lens Event of 2018. International Contact Lens Prescribing in 2018, compiled by IACLE Vice President Professor Philip Morgan and co-authors, reports on 33 countries and more than 24,000 contact lens fits. This year, for the first time, data from China are included.

Read a digital edition of Contact Lens Spectrum here. Sign up for alerts here



LA office works with ALDOO to improve education across the region

IACLE LA is to cooperate with the Latin American Association of Optics and Optometry (ALDOO) to improve contact lens and optometric education across ALDOO’s member countries. ALDOO’s educational committee has achieved its goals of approaching universities in the region, evaluating optometric programs, and holding educational meetings in various countries with the generous support of CooperVision. The last meeting was held during ALDOO’s event in León, Guanajuato, Mexico (10-12 November). In 2019, ALDOO’s will hold a new meeting in Santa Cruz, Bolivia and the IACLE LA office will take part. 

IACLE in the World broadcasts to 10 countries in 2018

IACLE’s radio program IACLE in the World – broadcast live across the LA region every Wednesday morning by Franja Visual Radio – resumed this month after the holidays. December participants included Johana Garzón (Colombia) (pictured). Among topics discussed were biocompatibility of solutions and contact lenses, and friction, lids and lenses. IACLE members also taking part last month were Patricia Flores (Chile) and Sergio García (Colombia). So far, the program has reached 10 Latin American countries. 

Access all recorded programs since November 2017 here  

Asia Pacific

IACLE Korea hails successful two-day meeting   

Myopia management and teaching techniques were on the agenda for 30 IACLE members attending the Educator Meeting and Train-the-Trainer Program held at the Johnson & Johnson Institute in Seoul last month (27-28 December). FIACLE Professor Kyounghee Park, Korea National Coordinator, organized the meeting and updated members on IACLE developments. Asia Pacific Regional President Dr Rajeswari Mahadevan joined the speaker panel and IACLE sponsors CooperVision, Johnson & Johnson Vision and Bausch + Lomb contributed industry presentations.

Look out for a full report on the IACLE Korea meeting next month.

IACLE awards West China college affiliated status

West China Clinical Medical College of Sichuan University has been awarded the IACLE Certificate of Affiliation. China National Coordinator Professor Wang Haiying, presented the certificate on 5 December. Haiying introduced educational projects and new developments at IACLE to teachers and students of the university’s Department of Optometry. Previously, Tianjin Vocational University, Jinling Institute of Technology and Tianjin Medical University have been approved as IACLE affiliated colleges.

Find out how IACLE can help your institution here

Lakshmi pays a visit to Tamil Nadu institution…  

IACLE Director of Global Education Lakshmi Shinde visited the SRM Medical College Hospital and Research Centre in Kancheepuram District, Tamil Nadu, India last month (6 December). Lakshmi (pictured third left) met with the Dean of the Department of Optometry, Professor A Sundaram, and spoke to students and faculty. The college will implement the Student Trial Exam this year. Lakshmi emphasized the need for more clinical exposure and clinic facilities for the students.

…and Mutahir manages myopia in Islamabad

Myopia management was the topic for a recent workshop for students and faculty members of Pakistan Institute of Rehabilitation Sciences (PIRS) in Islamabad. IACLE member Mutahir Shah (pictured center left), from the Al-Shifa Trust Eye Hospital in Rawalpindi, delivered the workshop and discussed IACLE membership and activities. The faculty at PIRS were interested in the Fellowship Exam, Distance Learning Program and Student Trial Exams for the coming years.

Europe / Africa – Middle East

Europe to host meetings in three countries

Events in France, Italy and the UK in the first half of 2019 will provide members with opportunities to hear the latest news from IACLE and celebrate our 40th anniversary.

This month, the Association des Optométristes de France holds its Congrès d’Optométrie and Contactologie near Paris (21-22 January) with FIACLEs Marina Barthe (France) and David Berkow (Israel) among the presenters. In May, IACLE will hold an Educator Meeting in Rome, Italy to coincide with the European Academy of Optometry and Optics annual conference (18-20 May). The IACLE meeting will be on Friday 17 May at Università Roma Tre. And the British Contact Lens Association will hold at its 2019 Clinical Conference & Exhibition in Manchester, UK (30 May – 1 June). The IACLE/BUCCLE Education Day will run in Manchester on Wednesday 29 May. IACLE has 158 members in Europe. The UK has the highest total with 42, Italy has 20 and France 17. Spain is close behind with 13 members.

Look out for further details of all these events in our newsletters.


  • 24-27 January – 2019 Global Specialty Lens Symposium, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA. Details here.
  • 25 January – Canadian Association of Optometrists, Optometric Leaders Forum 2019, Toronto, Canada. Details here.
  • 31 January – 1 February – 5th World Congress on Ophthalmology and Optometry, Singapore. Details here.
  • 14-17 February – 7th Annual Conference of All India Ophthalmological Society, Indore. Details here.
  • 15-17 February – 23rd ESCRS Winter Meeting of the European Society of Cataract & Refractive Surgeons, Athens, Greece. Details here.
  • 15-17 February – 58th Annual Contact Lens & Primary Care Congress, Kansas City, Missouri, USA. Details here.

A full schedule of IACLE and other events in 2019 is now available at Meetings & Conferences. 

Please email dates of 2019 events to 

International Association of Contact Lens Educators