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Sean Donahue, MD, PhD, to become president of the American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus


Donahue will serve as president until June 30, 2025, when he will host the AAPOS 2025 annual meeting in Salt Lake City, Utah. He previously had served as vice president since July 2023.

(Image Credit: AdobeStock/nito)

(Image Credit: AdobeStock/nito)

Sean Donahue, MD, PhD, will take the reins as president of the American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus (AAPOS) in July.

Donahue, the Sam and Darthea Coleman Professor of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, is vice chairman for Clinical Affairs, executive ambulatory medical director for the Ophthalmology Patient Care Center at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, and chief of Pediatric Ophthalmology Service.

According to its website, the goals of AAPOS are to advance the quality of children's eye care, support the training of pediatric ophthalmologists, support research activities in pediatric ophthalmology, and advance the care of adults with strabismus.1

Donahue’s appointment was made official at the AAPOS annual meeting, which concluded recently in Austin, Texas. He previously had served as vice-president since July 2023 and will serve as president until June 30, 2025, hosting the 2025 annual meeting of the organization in Salt Lake City, Utah.2

“I am thrilled to have this opportunity to lead the organization that has been central to my professional life for the last 30 years,” Donahue said in the VUMC news release. “Taking care of children at risk for permanent blindness and helping to treat adults with permanent, incapacitating double vision is incredibly rewarding, and I am hopeful that my enthusiasm for this great subspecialty will be apparent to our young members and trainees who are considering pediatric ophthalmology as a subspecialty.”

Donahue earned his MD and PhD in developmental neuroscience from Emory University in 1989. He did his ophthalmology residency at the University of Pittsburgh and fellowships in neuro-ophthalmology and pediatric ophthalmology at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics.3

According to the VUMC news release, Donahue’s research efforts have focused on validation and implementation of automated vision screening instruments that can be used in the primary care setting to detect potential eye problems in children prior to their being able to read a standard eye chart. He has been the lead author on several joint policy statements from AAPOS, the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO), and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) regarding vision screening and the pediatric eye exam in the primary care setting, and was recently the senior author on the AAP-AAO-AAPOS joint statement regarding visual abnormalities and treatment in youth with concussion.2

Donahue was selected in 2016 as a Choosing Wisely Champion by AAPOS for his work in developing a screening instrument to help reduce the number of children who receive unnecessary eye examinations. According to the news release, the Champion program is a national initiative that recognizes physicians who make significant contributions toward reducing overuse and waste in health care.2

VUMC noted in its news release that Donahue in 2017 received the Bonnie Strickland Champion for Children’s Vision Award from the National Center for Children’s Vision and Eye Health at Prevent Blindness for his work to improve children’s vision and for his work in the advancement of vision screening technology.

1. Organization - American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus. www.aapos.org. Accessed April 25, 2024. https://www.aapos.org/about/organization
2. Humphrey N. Sean Donahue to become president of the American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus. VUMC News. Published April 22, 2024. Accessed April 25, 2024. https://news.vumc.org/2024/04/22/sean-donahue-to-become-president-of-the-american-association-for-pediatric-ophthalmology-and-strabismus/
3. Sean P. Donahue, M.D., Ph.D. | Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences. www.vumc.org. Accessed April 25, 2024. https://www.vumc.org/ophthalmology/person/sean-p-donahue-md-phd
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