Steve M. Friedlander, MD, FACS
was recognized for Participation in the Council of the American Academy of Ophthalmology

Dr. Friedlander was recognized for participation on the Council of the American Academy of Ophthalmology during AAO 2015 in Las Vegas.

The Council serves as an advisory body to the Academy’s Board of Trustees. More than 100 Academy members serve on this body and act as liaisons between their society and the Academy bringing issues identified by their societies to the attention of the Academy’s Board of Trustees. Issues are brought to the Academy Board of Trustees as Council Advisory Recommendations (CARs). Each spring the Council meets to debate and formulate its recommendations for the Academy Board.

This year, one of the Council recommendations that was approved by the Board of Trustees included implementing regional responses to individual state scope issues. The Secretariat for State Affairs organizes multi-state calls or meetings for states at high risk or who are currently facing an optometric surgery initiative.

Additionally, based on an earlier Council recommendation, “Advocating for Patients” presentations were delivered by advocacy leaders at each of the six Subspecialty Days at AAO 2015. These presentations provided messaging regarding the critical importance of contributing to all three ophthalmology funds – the Surgical Scope Fund, OPHTHPAC and state eye PACs in order to protect quality patient eye care and the profession.

The Council has also recommended that the Academy recognize ophthalmologists for outstanding efforts in the state and/or federal advocacy arenas via a CAR that was considered and ultimately approved by the Academy’s Board. Each year, all societies represented on the Council, are solicited for nominees for the Academy’s Outstanding Advocate Award. All nominees are reviewed by the Academy’s Awards Committee which ultimately selects a recipient who is then approved by the Board. The Outstanding Advocate Award recipient is recognized each year at the Opening Session of the Academy’s annual meeting. In 2015, Jean E. Ramsey, MD, MPH was nominated by the American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus (AAPOS) and Women in Ophthalmology (WIO). Dr. Ramsey was honored at the Opening session in Las Vegas as the Outstanding Advocate Award recipient.

Representatives to the Council are elected by each state society and by subspecialty societies and specialized interest groups in ophthalmology. On December 31st, Dr. Steve M. Friedlander will conclude his term on the Academy Council.