JOIN US FOR THE VOSH ANNUAL MEETING

Celebrating 50 years of providing free, quality eye care

OCTOBER 29 & 30, 2022

San Diego, CA

(This will be a hybrid event: in person or streamed on line)

Towards Vision For All

This year our event focuses on our commitment to bringing vision for all.  Last year, governments represented at the United Nations unanimously recognized the importance of eye health for social and economic development and the need to support the significant number of people living with preventable and treatable vision impairment to achieve a more equitable, inclusive, sustainable and resilient world.

Since its origins, VOSH chapters have been addressing the burden of eye health conditions affecting the most vulnerable groups in society. Fifty-years ago the movement that became VOSH/International started and has continued to grow.

The meeting will showcase the diverse contribution of VOSH/International, its chapters and partners to achieving vision for all ranging from low vision rehabilitation services, to supporting learning through children’s vision, to approaches to strengthen optometric education, the importance of research and now that clinics are resuming, sharing clinical pearls to make your humanitarian clinic a great success.

You are warmly invited to join us in person or online

We are grateful for the support of National Vision, Inc. as the Visionary Sponsor of our meeting

 

Updated COVID-19 and VOSH Humanitarian Clinics Advice

VOSH/International recently consulted its US and International Chapters about the feasibility and timing to restart our humanitarian clinics. While the vaccination process continues with different levels of success depending on availability and acceptance, it is evident that vaccine inequity and the availability and reliability of data in several countries are issues we need to consider.

Even if already vaccinated and boosted, our chapters are still concerned about the wellbeing of our volunteers and patients.  Some chapters, are organizing clinics locally where they are better able to comply with the existing safety requirements and respective state/country regulations.

The COVID-19 pandemic and its variants are being experienced quite differently depending on state, region, country, vaccine availability, vaccine acceptance, and the spread of SARS-COV-2 variants. Most VOSH chapters are not holding clinics or traveling internationally in 2021 or 2022.

If a VOSH Chapter choses to hold a clinic or travel internationally, we highly recommend that the chapter performs due diligence to comply fully with the requirements established by the visited country, ensures all VOSH volunteers are aware of and follow strict safety guidelines and all existing protocols and regulations of the country, and keeps the principle of “do no harm” embedded in all its decision making. As always, the wellbeing and safety for VOSH volunteers and our patients is of utmost importance and central to any decision-making process. We have published our updated clinic guidelines with best practices to be observed in this new context. VOSH chapters in specific countries are using protocols that need to be considered as well. You can download VOSH/International clinic guidelines here.

*VOSH/International is formed by autonomous US and international chapters that are fully and only responsible for their activities, fundraising and decision-making.  VOSH/International can only provide recommendations based on our best knowledge and information at the time.

Also please keep checking the following sites with official and most recent updates:

World Health Organization: https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019

US CDC: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/when-to-delay-travel.html

US Government Travel Advise: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/traveladvisories/COVID-19-Country-Specific-Information.html

Thank you for your hard work and dedication to improving vision and eye health throughout the world.

Michael Ciszek, OD, dipl ABO, FVI

President, VOSH/International

December 2021