Thousands expected for World Congress

S?Paulo, Brazil—Ophthalmologists from all over the world are being called together for the first World Ophthalmology Congress.

SãPaulo, Brazil-Ophthalmologists from all over the world are being called together for the first World Ophthalmology Congress.

More than 6,000 ophthalmologists are expected to attend the event, slated for Feb. 19 to 24, 2006, in SãPaulo, Brazil.

Fernanda Prestes, executive secretariat for the congress, said the International Council of Ophthalmology voted last year to change the event's name.

Special programming emphasis is being placed on the results of recent clinical trials and their impact on patient care.

Attendees can follow tracks geared to their specialty, or mix and match sessions according to their interests. Subspecialty days will focus attention on cataract, retina, glaucoma, and refractive surgery, with lectures presented in a 1,200-seat theater. Registration for these subspecialty days is included in the general registration.

The event is supported by the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO), the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO), the Pan Arab African Council of Ophthalmology, European Ophthalmological Society, Afro Asian Council of Ophthalmology, Asia Pacific Academy of Ophthalmology, and the Pan-American Association of Ophthalmology.

A number of prominent American ophthalmologists-including David R. Guyer, MD, chief executive officer and director, Eyetech Pharmaceuticals; Gary W. Abrams, MD, president of ARVO, H. Dunbar Hoskins Jr., executive vice president of the AAO; and Mark J. Mannis, professor and chair, department of ophthalmology, University of California at Davis-expressed enthusiasm for the meeting in testimonials on the meeting's Web site.

"The community of ophthalmologists transcends political and national boundaries," said Robert Ritch, MD, professor of clinical ophthalmology, chief of glaucoma service, and surgeon director, The New York Eye and Ear Infirmary. "It is at this congress that we will be able to come together, to hear the latest information in plenary sessions, scientific and clinical presentations, courses, and symposia, to cross-fertilize with our colleagues from around the world, to see old friends and make new ones, all united in the wish to bring ophthalmology to the highest state of the art throughout the globe and to fight together against blindness."

The event offers attendees an opportunity to explore Brazil's Carnival, which starts Feb. 25, as well as the Amazon, the Pantanal, and Iguassu Falls.

English, Spanish, and Portuguese will be the official languages of the congress, and some scientific sessions will be simultaneously translated into those languages. Abstracts must be submitted in one of those three languages, although posters may be printed in their original language.

The congress will be held in China in 2008, Berlin in 2010, and Chicago in 2012.

For further information about the meeting, visit