The Importance of A Unified Organization

by Dr. Brenda Montecalvo, President

“Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.” — Helen Keller (1880-1968)

Optometry serves many areas of eye health and vision care, including Contact Lens, Sports Vision, InfantSEE, Glaucoma, Ocular Surface Disease, Research, Education, Public Health, Private Clinical Care, Students, Corporate Eye Care, Veterans’ Eye Health and Vision Care, Armed Forces, Low Vision, Vision Therapy, and Rehabilitation. Optometry’s diversity makes our profession strong.

We need to create an organization that allows for excellent intra-professional communication and collaboration, utilizing everyone’s talents so we can best serve our patients. Our organization will remain strong if we embrace the individuality of each member. Our ultimate goal is that all patients have good vision and healthy eyes.

Although optometrists have diverse interests, we have in common the desire that all people have access to full scope optometric eye health and vision care. I would like  to emphasize the importance of strong state and national optometric organizations. We must embrace the challenges we face and view them as opportunities to move the profession forward. Without a unified voice it will be difficult for optometry to prevail in the critical issues of Affordable Care Act, Electronic Health Records, Medical Home, and Accountable Care Organizations. Each issue requires detailed understanding so that optometry is at the table when important decisions are made.

A unified organization begins with listening to the concerns of all members, representing all areas of optometry, achieving 100% membership, and funding the national and state political action committees. Thank you for your support as we work together to achieve these goals.

The focus of this column has been the importance of a unified organization. There is no one better qualified to present a unified voice for optometry than Ohio’s own Dr. Bob Layman. His unique qualifications in leadership, experience and dedication make him the best candidate for AOA Trustee in 2013.

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