AOA leaders among U.S. representatives at international meeting on standards

May 22, 2012

U.S. delegates at the ISO meeting included, first row from left, Neil Roche, Charlie Campbell, M.D., Jeff Endres, and Allen Krisiloff; second row from left, Bill Brown, O.D., Ph.D., Dick Whitney, Ken Frederick, and Karl Citek, O.D., Ph.D.

AOA Commission on Ophthalmic Standards (CmOS) representatives Karl Citek, O.D., Ph.D., and William Brown, O.D., Ph.D., joined delegates from around in the world this spring at a week-long meeting of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) Technical Committee 172 (TC172) Subcommittee 7 (SC7) on Ophthalmic Optics and Instruments.

The ISO network develops and publishes international standards and includes 163 countries. Drs. Citek and Brown represented the United States.

“Standards serve two primary purposes,” said Dr. Citek, who chairs the CmOS. “First, standards define requirements and set tolerances for manufacturing of products. This ensures that patients receive quality products that will perform as intended. Second, standards act as guidelines for practice. This ensures that doctors perform techniques and procedures that are consistent with the current level of care necessary to treat patients with particular conditions.”

The meeting was held in Milan, Italy, and covered a wide variety of topics such as technical reports on free-form lens technology, ocular hazards of ultraviolet (UV) and short-wavelength visible radiation, enhanced abrasion resistance, reviews of standards for focimeters, intraocular lenses, contact lenses and contact lens care products, semi-finished and finished lenses, frame specifications and measurement, electronic frame catalogue, ophthalmometers, optical coherence tomography, corneal topographers, axial length measurement, reporting aberrations of the eye, and developing new standards for optical projectors and electronic displays for acuity charts, and correlation of chart optotypes.

Dr. Brown was named the project leader and will spearhead work on these topics.

“It is important for the AOA, through its member representatives on CmOS, to participate in both national and international standards meetings,” said Dr. Citek. “Many of the standards discussed in Milan, for example, apply to products and instruments that are supplied to U.S. doctors by multinational corporations that adhere to the respective standards. Likewise, U.S. doctors need to be aware of the evolution of patient care, as we gain new understanding of conditions and incorporate the use of improved, enhanced, and novel techniques and instruments into our examination procedures. The AOA’s participation in such meetings is critical to ensure the safety of our patients, the integrity of our practices, and that any new developments become available to U.S. doctors in a timely manner.”

Future meetings of ISO TC172 SC7 will be held in Berlin in fall 2013 and China in spring 2015.

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