NEWS spectrum


IACLE Announces Third World Congress

Educators and key opinion leaders from around the world will gather in the United Kingdom when the International Association of Contact Lens Educators holds its Third IACLE World Congress on Contact Lens Education. Hosted at The University of Manchester, the congress takes place from May 24 to 28, 2015, and is timed to precede the British Contact Lens Association’s 2015 Clinical Conference & Exhibition in Liverpool (May 29 to 31).

More than 100 delegates are expected to attend, including contact lens educators from IACLE’s three global regions. Platinum Sponsors of the event include Alcon, CooperVision, and Johnson & Johnson Vision Care.

The theme for the congress is Shaping the Future of Contact Lens Education. Keynote speakers will be Associate Professor Pat Caroline (Pacific University), Associate Professor Helen Compton (Old Dominion University), and Apple Distinguished Educator Joe Moretti (United Kingdom). A special symposium on The Business of Contact Lenses will be broadcast live online as web lectures for IACLE members around the world to take part.

In addition to IACLE members, delegates will attend from the Association of Optometric Contact Lens Educators (AOCLE) and British Universities Committee of Contact Lens Educators (BUCCLE), along with IACLE executive board/staff members and representatives from IACLE’s industry partners.

Previous IACLE World Congresses on Contact Lens Education were held in 1994 and 2000, both hosted by the Centre for Contact Lens Research and School of Optometry at the University of Waterloo, Canada.

For more on the 2015 congress, visit

CooperVision Expands Clariti 1 Day Availability in United States

CooperVision, Inc. expanded availability in the United States of its Clariti 1 Day family of silicone hydrogel contact lenses. CooperVision added Clariti 1 day to its product portfolio through its acquisition of Sauflon earlier this year and is now significantly increasing access to those lenses, which previously had limited domestic availability.

Customers can now order Clariti lenses directly through CooperVision. Fitting set availability will continue to grow, as will availability of the lenses through authorized distributors.

Clariti 1 Day is currently the only brand that offers silicone hydrogel daily disposable lenses in spherical, toric, and multifocal designs.

Vision Expo Expands GCLF

International Vision Expo & Conference will once again host the Global Contact Lens Forum (GCLF) on March 19, 2015 at International Vision Expo East in New York. The organization says that the GCLF reflects its commitment to the delivery of quality education focused on the latest scientific content with critical business strategies related to contact lenses.

The British Contact Lens Association (BCLA) and the Contact Lens Society of America have both announced their renewed support for the 2015 program.

The 2015 GCLF will introduce enhanced clinical content in a one-day format that was introduced at International Vision Expo West, where more than 300 eyecare professionals participated. It will offer six hours of free continuing education presented by faculty including GCLF Co-Directors Louise Sclafani, OD, and Barry Eiden, OD, as well as Clarke Newman, OD; Scot Morris, OD; Rob Davis, OD; and Michael Ward, MMSc. The education program is designed to combine the latest scientific content with critical business strategies related to contact lenses. Topics include the state of the contact lens industry, contact lens challenges, and practice and patient management topics.

International Vision Expo and the BCLA announced an initial content exchange agreement in 2013, creating the GCLF as part of efforts to expand continuing education offerings at their respective conferences. The Forum explores both the scientific and business sides of contact lenses, focusing on profitability, scientific strategies, and the future ahead. The Forum debuted in 2014 at International Vision Expo East in New York and has since been held at the BCLA Clinical Conference and at International Vision Expo West in Las Vegas, providing an exceptional forum for the sharing of ideas, clinical and business knowledge, and expertise.

For more information, visit


The British Contact Lens Association (BCLA) has launched a new, year-round mobile app for all BCLA news and events, including its Clinical Conference & Exhibition. Unveiled in November at the BCLA’s inaugural Pioneers & Visionaries Conference, the new app builds on the success of the BCLA app launched ahead of the 2014 BCLA Clinical Conference and Exhibition in Birmingham. Key features include regularly updated conference program, ability to create a personalized schedule, interactive floor plans, speaker biographies, lecture abstracts, networking via social media, and more.

The app can be downloaded from the Google Play Store for Android and from the Apple iTunes Store for iOS devices.

Blanchard Receives Founders’ Award

Jean-Louis Blanchard, OD, received the Founders’ Award from the Cornea and Contact Lens Section of the American Academy of Optometry (AAO) during the Section Awards ceremony at the 2014 AAO Annual Meeting.

The Founders’ Award honors those Academy Fellows who founded the Contact Lens Section of the American Academy of Optometry. It is presented to an individual, group, or company who has made an outstanding contribution to the clinical aspect of the art or science of contact lens fitting.

When Dr. Blanchard completed optometry school in 1946, the words “contact lens” were not spoken in a classroom because they were yet to be available. Still, from that early time, he felt an urge to know more. When contact lenses became available in 1955, Dr. Blanchard saw their potential and how they would improve the vision of his patients.

In 1962, he began to manufacture and modify contact lenses for his practice and for a small group of colleagues. One year later, he established Veracon, an optometrist-owned laboratory dedicated to the production of contact lenses. In 1986, Veracon became Blanchard Labs, a GP lens supplier.

GPLI Announces 2015 Webinars

The Gas Permeable Lens Institute (GPLI) recently announced its 2015 webinar series. These presentations will be given by GPLI Advisory Board members who are considered experts in the specific topics that they will be presenting:

January 20: Ocular Wellness and GP Lenses – Jack Schaeffer, OD

February 17: Specialty Contact Lens Care – Susan Gromacki, OD, MS

March 17: Scleral Lens Fitting for Healthy Eyes: Astigmatic and Presbyopic Applications – Melissa Barnett, OD, and Stephanie Woo, OD

April 21: GP and Custom Soft Multifocal Lens Update 2015 – Doug Benoit, OD

May 19: “1-2-3 GP” Corneal Reshaping, Scleral Lenses, and Multifocal Fitting and Applications – Michael Lipson OD

June 16: Hybrid and Piggyback Patient Selection, Fitting, and Troubleshooting – Barry Eiden, OD, and Jeff Sonsino, OD

July 21: Ocular Surface Considerations for Custom Contact Lens Care – Mile Brujic, OD, and Dave Kading, OD

August 18: Custom Soft Lens Update – Susan Resnick, OD

September 15: How to Effectively Promote and Market Your Specialty Contact Lens Practice – Roxanna Potter, OD

October 20: Myopia Control 2015 – Jeff Walline, OD, PhD

November 17: Specialty GP Applications: 1) Fine-tuning Scleral Lens Fits, and 2) Building Your Cornea Reshaping Lens Practice – Jason Jedlicka, OD

December 15: Contemporary Scleral Lens Applications: 1) In Ocular Surface Disease and 2) Lens Care – Michael Ward, FCLSA, FAAO


Alcon has launched Alcon TV, which creates a new communication platform by which its stakeholders can obtain regular information about the company. Alcon TV contains a strategic mix of content, including business, product, patient awareness, corporate brand, and corporate social responsibility information. The inaugural episode of Alcon TV focuses on the company’s third-quarter results, featuring Jeff George, global head of Alcon.

SECO International has launched SECO University, an online Education Resource Center for continuing education (CE). Optometrists have access to more than 50 hours of COPE-approved online CE, eight years and 1,000+ hours of SECO Audio Course Recordings, and three years of Multimedia Posters from the Advanced Learning Center at SECO. The SECO Special Session Videos include full-course lectures in HD-quality video, and the OD Online Course Library offers the traditional online format with audio, a presentation, and a handout. SECO plans to add AOP online courses next year. Additional courses will be added regularly, and the SECO 2015 courses will be available beginning May 1, 2015.

■ Jan. 15, 2015 is the deadline for online submission to the 2015 National Optometry Hall of Fame, which is administered by the American Optometric Association’s (AOA) charitable foundation, Optometry Cares. Inductees will be honored at Optometry’s Meeting in June 2015 in Seattle. There are two award categories—one for optometrists who work in the academic field, and the other for optometrists who work in private practice or federal service—with minimum of one person inducted from each category. To access the nomination forms and criteria, visit has released a new, free patient handout for eye-care practitioners. The handout, which can be customized with practice information, focuses on tips for contact lens wearers. It features five tips covering a range of contact lens topics and encourages those with other questions to visit for even more information.

■ In recognition of improvements to the manufacturing process of its legacy Hydrasoft custom contact lenses, CooperVision, Inc. has received the 2014 Gold Team Excellence Award from the Greater Rochester Quality Council (GRQC). In seeking ways to continue manufacturing Hydrasoft in a way that met both customer demand and allowed it to remain competitive, CooperVision teams standardized the product’s manufacturing platform, then transitioned to a fully made-to-order process while maintaining customer service levels. Concurrently, the project teams simplified the pricing structure and updated Hydrasoft packaging to align with CooperVision’s product portfolio. The transition was completed in mid-2014, on time and on budget, resulting in reduced manufacturing costs and increased customer satisfaction.

Vision Source, a doctor alliance and optical retailer in the United States, achieved a company milestone by adding its 3,000th location. The optometrist whose practice officially became the 3,000th location is Dr. Ben Gaddie, OD, from Louisville, Kentucky. Dr. Gaddie is the owner and director of the Gaddie Eye Centers, a full-service multi-location practice in Louisville that was started by his father more than 40 years ago.