Allergan, Sightsavers and IAPB Announce 'Keep Sight' Initiative

By Staff
Thursday, May 23, 2019 12:27 AM DUBLIN, Ireland—Allergan, Sightsavers and the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IPAB) have joined forces to launch the “Keep Sight” initiative, aimed at addressing glaucoma in underserved areas of the world. The initiative will provide training for health care professions to learn how to screen at-risk populations, ensure early diagnosis, and provide treatment and long-term care. The first program will launch at a hospital in Nigeria, providing training to 50 health care professionals. The goal for this first program is to screen 5,000 people, treat 500 patients, and provide surgery for 70 patients. It is anticipated that the initiative will expand to screen 500,000 people by 2021.

PE-Backed EyeSouth Expands into Tennessee Through Affiliation With Two Private Practices

By Staff
Thursday, May 23, 2019 12:24 AM ATLANTA—EyeSouth Partners, which is backed by the private equity firm Shore Capital Partners, recently announced its expansion into Tennessee with an affiliation with Cumberland Eye Care and Plateau ASC, located in Crossville, and Cookeville Eye Specialists and Perimeter ASC of Cookeville. The affiliations will establish EyeSouth’s initial presence in Tennessee, “which will be a key growth state for the company going forward,” according to the announcement. Each practice and surgery center will continue to operate under its brand, with no changes to its staff, physicians or locations, the announcement noted.

Safilo Reimburses Equity Linked Bonds, Completing Refinancing Plan

By Staff
Thursday, May 23, 2019 12:21 AM PADOVA, Italy—Safilo Group S.p.A. (Reuters SFLG.MI ) said yesterday that the Group has proceeded with the expected reimbursement of the €150,000,000 equity linked bonds 2014-2019 (ISIN XS1069899232). This completes the refinancing plan developed by the Group during 2018, for a total amount of €300,000,000 between the share capital increase and the new credit agreement expiring in 2023.

Jefferson Health and Wills Eye Hospital Launch William H. Annesley, Jr., MD '48 EyeBrain Center

By Staff
Thursday, May 23, 2019 12:18 AM PHILADELPHIA—Jefferson Health and Wills Eye Hospital have launched the world’s first center focused on the connections between the eye and the brain. This center, created by Thomas Jefferson University in partnership with Wills Eye Hospital and thanks to the help of several generous philanthropists, will be the first of its kind to explore the visual signatures of neurological diseases.

Essilor And Royal Government of Bhutan Deliver 10,000 Pairs Of Glasses To Students

By Staff
Thursday, May 23, 2019 12:15 AM CHARENTON-LE-PONT, France—Essilor and the Royal Government of Bhutan are celebrating delivering 10,000 pairs of glasses as part of their joint partnership to make Bhutan the first country in the world to eradicate poor vision. Currently, 25 percent of people in Bhutan suffer from uncorrected poor vision, and a large portion of people are at risk of UVA/UVB rays due to high altitudes.

June Deadlines Approach for China Tariff Comments and Testimony; Process Could Shape Sizeable Duties on Eyewear

By Staff
Wednesday, May 22, 2019 12:24 AM ALEXANDRIA, Va.—The fourth list of tariff numbers—which could become subject to China 301 customs duties of as much as 25 percent—was published in the Federal Register last Friday, May 17 and as previously reported this list now includes core eyewear products including spectacle lenses, ophthalmic frames, sunglasses, reading glasses and other low vision devices made in China. Deadlines for comments opposing the proposed action must be filed by June 17 while comments from those requesting to testify at upcoming hearings need to be filed by June 10.

Total ECP Acquires Bethesda Vision Care, Maryland-Based Practice of Michael Berenhaus, OD

By Staff
Wednesday, May 22, 2019 12:21 AM BLOOMINGTON, Ill.—Total Eye Care Partners (Total ECP) said Tuesday that it has acquired Bethesda Vision Care from Dr. Michael Berenhaus, a member and former president of the Maryland Optometric Association. Total ECP, which is backed by Toronto-based private equity fund manager Imperial Capital Group, was founded in 2017. The terms of its most recent transaction were not disclosed. Bethesda Vision Care is the fifth practice in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area to partner with Total ECP.

Center for Vision and Population Health at Prevent Blindness Appoints New Advisory Committee Members

By Staff
Wednesday, May 22, 2019 12:18 AM CHICAGO—Prevent Blindness, has announced the appointment of its new Advisory Committee members for the Center for Vision and Population Health at Prevent Blindness (CVPH). The CVPH was established in December 2018 as a national coordinating body for effective practices, state-level technical assistance, and programmatic interventions. This month, the CVPH convened the full membership of the Advisory Committee in Chicago for the first time, led by committee chair Heather E. Whitson, MD, MHS, associate professor of medicine, associate professor in ophthalmology, and deputy director of the Center for the Study of Aging and Human Development at Duke University.

Zeiss Ranked Best Company in 2019 Public Value Atlas

By Staff
Wednesday, May 22, 2019 12:15 AM OBERKOCHEN, Germany—Zeiss was named Germany's highest-ranked company in the 2019 Public Value Atlas (Gemeinwohlatlas 2019). The announcement was made in Berlin yesterday by the authors of the study, the Center for Leadership and Values in Society at the University of St. Gallen (CLVS-HSG) in cooperation with the Dr. Arend Oetker chair of business psychology and leadership at HHL Leipzig Graduate School of Management. “We are delighted about our company receiving the highest score for the 2019 Public Value Atlas. It demonstrates that Zeiss still embodies those values bestowed by the founders on this foundation company: economic success and innovation with the goals of providing society with meaningful work and advancing scientific and technological progress,” said professor Michael Kaschke, president and CEO of Carl Zeiss AG.

Study Probes ODs’ Attitudes About Blue-Light Blocking Devices

By Staff
Tuesday, May 21, 2019 12:24 AM VANCOUVER—A recent study found that optometrists remain split on the impact of blue light from electronic devices, such as computer and phone screens, and the effectiveness of blue light-blocking devices, according to reporting by Patrick Campbell in MD Magazine. The study, titled “Insights into Australian optometrists’ knowledge and attitude toward prescribing blue light-blocking ophthalmic devices,” was published in the Journal of the College of Optometrists and presented at the 2019 meeting of the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) held here recently.

FDA Approves EYLEA Injection for Diabetic Retinopathy

By Staff
Tuesday, May 21, 2019 12:21 AM TARRYTOWN, N.Y.—Regeneron Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: REGN) announced on May 13 that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved EYLEA Injection to treat all stages of diabetic retinopathy (DR), and thereby reduce the risk of blindness. “Millions of people have been robbed of their vision due to the progression of diabetic retinopathy,” said David Brown, MD, FACS, an investigator for the Panorama trial and director of research at retina consultants of Houston. "The prevention of worsening diabetic retinopathy with EYLEA provides a compelling rationale for early treatment of patients with this disease, particularly since eyes dosed with EYLEA as infrequently as every 16 weeks showed significant improvements in the pivotal Panaroma trial.”

Coburn Names New Sales Manager for Diagnostics Instruments

By Staff
Tuesday, May 21, 2019 12:18 AM SOUTH WINDSOR, Conn.—Coburn Technologies has named Ezequiel Lukin as national sales manager, with a specific focus on diagnostic instruments for the U.S. market. “Ezequiel is a great addition to our team,” according to vice president of sales, Wayne Labrecque. “Our diagnostics product line is an integral part of our business, and with a growing interest in our products, as well as new product development, we are confident Ezequiel will strategically build our business further.”

Deadline Is June 21 to Submit Eyewear and Sunwear Products to Accessories Council Design Excellence Awards

By Staff
Tuesday, May 21, 2019 12:15 AM NEW YORK—The deadline is June 21 for companies to submit nominations for The Accessory Council's inaugural Design Excellence Awards, to be bestowed upon outstanding products in 15 award categories including Eyewear, Handbags, Personal Accessories, Jewelry, Watches, Footwear and Tech and Innovation. The Accessories Council board of directors and the Accessories Innovation Committee will select four to five finalists per category based on the criteria of excellence in design, unique appearance and/or function, consumer needs addressed by product, appropriate aesthetics, innovative materials or technology, market positioning and competitive performance, social images, emotional appeal, and sustainability.

Vuzix and Plessey Partner on Design for Smart Glasses Display

By Staff
Monday, May 20, 2019 12:24 AM ROCHESTER, N.Y.—Smart glasses producer Vuzix Corp. and Plessey, a developer of advanced optoelectronic technologies, announced an exclusive display device design and long-term supply agreement. The agreement will support the development and production of next-generation AR products and solutions that combine Plessey's microLED light source technology with Vuzix' extensive expertise and IP in smart glasses and essential optics technologies, according to a statement from the two companies. Vuzix has already developed an evolving family of smart glasses culminating in the Vuzix Blade, the next generation smart display with a see-through viewing experience via its proprietary waveguide optics.

Versant Health Donates $100,000 to Vision To Learn, Supports Children’s Medicaid Vision Benefits

By Staff
Monday, May 20, 2019 12:21 AM BALTIMORE, Md.—Versant Health has announced a $100,000 gift to Vision To Learn, a non-profit organization aimed at ensuring all school children have access to eye screenings, eye exams and eyeglasses, as well as helping connect children with their Medicaid Vision benefits. Versant Health employees gave $50,000, and Versant Health matched that donation.