More than 23,000 attend AAO annual meeting

December 1, 2007

More than 23,000 people attended the 2007 annual meeting of the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) Nov. 11 to 13 in New Orleans, according to the organization.

New Orleans-More than 23,000 people attended the 2007 annual meeting of the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) Nov. 11 to 13 in New Orleans, according to the organization. The event offered 253 instruction courses, 181 "Breakfast with the Experts" roundtable programs, 91 skills transfer courses, 71 American Academy of Ophthalmic Executives courses, and more than 120 hours of free sessions.

Attendance at the subspecialty day events Nov. 9 and 10 totaled more than 5,800.

Despite numbers being down from last year, when a record-setting 32,574 people registered and 27,249 attended, H. Dunbar Hoskins Jr., MD, AAO executive vice president, said the organization was "very pleased" with participation in the latest meeting and did not regret its decision to proceed with previously made plans to host the meeting in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina hit the city in 2005.

Highlights of the gathering included a keynote address by Judah Folkman, MD, known as the father of angiogenesis; an appearance by Susan Desmond-Hellman, MD, MPH, president of product development for Genentech, at Retina Subspecialty Day to discuss the company's decision to stop selling bevacizumab (Avastin) to compounding pharmacies; and the participation of more than 600 people in the EyeBuild project to construct houses in residential areas affected by the hurricane.