In early March I attended the Southern Regional Congress (SRC) in Melbourne. This is the biggest optometric conference in Australia and it is held each year in Melbourne. This year there were over 900 delegates and they were treated to some excellent lectures from both local and overseas speakers. The conference has a strong clinical aspect with many presentations outlining what is considered best practice for the consulting room, however there were also some very good talks which provided delegates with all the latest developments in ophthalmic research.
One of the best lectures I attended was on the management and care of the low vision patient. This is an area that often doesn’t receive a lot of attention at optometry conferences, which is a pity as it still remains a very important and vital part of optometry practice. In particular, compared to 10 or 20 years ago, there is now a lot more that can be done for patients who have reduced vision due to long-standing or recent onset ocular problems. It is also worth noting that International Conference on Low Vision – the biggest meeting on low vision in the world – is being held this year in Melbourne in late March.
The other thing I like about the SRC is that is has a wonderful trade show with all the latest ophthalmic equipment and products on display. This year – with the aid of my practice manager Carly and my senior dispenser Lynne who also both attended the conference – I was able to purchase an optical coherence tomographer (OCT), which is a brilliant piece of equipment that allows you to detect and monitor changes in the optic nerve and retina at the back of the eye. I will tell you more about the OCT in a future blog.