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Editorial: Inspiration and connection – Ken Nischal

Melting pot brings direct and clear benefits to the children we treat.

Ken Nischal

Posted: Monday, November 4, 2019

I was delighted to be asked by EuroTimes to write this editorial at a time when paediatric and adult ophthalmology are increasingly working together to keep apace of the rapid developments in the field and the changing needs of patients.
I was really pleased with the number of people, more than 150, who attended the recent paediatric subspecialty day during the 37th Congress of the ESCRS in Paris, France. What the day highlighted most was the fact that more and more people are turning their attention to detail, functional and structural changes in children.
Part of that reason is that at the World Society of Paediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus (WSPOS) there is this interaction between those who do adult work and have some input in children, and those who deal with a lot of paediatric problems but don’t have exposure to the adult world; that mix allows people to take away some of the ideas they’ve seen in the adult world and apply them in children.
The 5th World Congress of Paediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus (WCPOS V) will take in Amsterdam next October, along with the ESCRS, EURETINA and EuCornea Congresses, and again we will have these amazing joint symposia. In this melting pot there is a direct and clear benefit to the children we look after, which is really exciting. That is reflected in who we have chosen as our key speakers; for the Kanski Medal, which is given to someone who is not a paediatric ophthalmologist but whose work has influenced children, we’ve invited Marie-José Tassignon, Belgium, with her bag-in-the-lens approach and her work on the anterior vitreous space. We will have David Mackey of Australia for the keynote, who will speak about ocular genetics, and for the strabismus keynote lecture we will have Burton Kushner, USA – a very international line-up.
We are confident we can break the 2,000 attendance barrier for a paediatric ophthalmology and strabismus conference this time, which has never been done before.
We talk about connectivity in terms of cyberspace and the internet, but connectivity in a physical space between experts is just as important, as physical presence inspires people to do something new and something different for children. So do come join us next October!
* Ken Nischal is co-director of WSPOS