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White Cane Week’s Summit will be an in-depth discussion by leading experts in eye health, ophthalmology and optometry on just what is preventable vision loss and blindness. The discussion will also look at the main causes of vision loss and blindness and the burden it places on Canada’s health system. The panel will discuss where we need to go in considering the state of vision health in Canada, focusing on the following issues: the inescapable reality of unmet need; eliminating the COVID-19 backlog; and a call for comprehensive eye examinations for those most vulnerable, our children and an ever increasing, aging population.

TOPIC: Preventable Vision Loss and Blindness

KEYNOTE SPEAKER: Dr. Diane Van Staden (1)

SPEAKERS: Dr. Marko Popovic (2), Doug Earle (3), Dr. Keith Gordon (4)

DATE: Tuesday, February 22, 2022

TIME: 4:00-5:30 p.m. EST

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 (1) Dr. Diane Van Staden is an Optometrist, a public health professional and the optometry academic leader at the University of Kwazulu-Natal in Durban, South Africa. She enjoys an extensive background in public health and development within the field of global eye health and her research interests include a comparison of eye health in various global regions. It is in this context that she was the author of a study published in March 2020 in the Canadian Journal of Public Health, entitled: “The Universal Eye Health Imperative for Canada: An Inescapable Reality of Unmet Need”.

 (2) Dr. Marko M. Popovic MD MPH (C), Department of Ophthalmology and Vision Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto.

 (3) Doug Earle President and CEO, Fighting Blindness Canada.

 (4) Dr. Keith Gordon Senior Research Officer, Canadian Council of the Blind.

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