We look forward to welcoming you to Singapore and the Western Pacific region and sharing the many unique cultures, experiences and expertise of the 60 IAPB members from the Western Pacific. A region that is home to more than 1.7 billion people and includes 28 countries stretching from China and Mongolia in the north, to New Zealand in the south of the region.

At the GA, we will shine a spotlight on the Western Pacific and the many advances in eye care across the region as part of Vision 2020 and GAP such as successful integration of eyes into health systems in Malaysia, development of Optometry in Vietnam and new cadres and training programmes for eye health personnel in the Pacific, collaborations for funding and programmes in the Australian Blindness Initiative, the WHO -IAPB- BHVI Joint Meeting on Myopia to name a few.

The GA is also an opportunity to learn together and connect to address some of the big challenges facing the region; Asia has the highest rates of myopia in the world and a disproportionate burden of people affected by vision impairment. The Pacific has high rates of Diabetic Retinopathy and faces unique challenges in delivering eye care to a large population spread across many islands.

I’d like to thank all the members who participated in GA consultations over the last 12 months at CoM 2018 & 2019, in China and through Vision 2020 Australia and the Western Pacific programme committee; Marcus Ang, Ana Cama, Brandon Ah Tong, Drew Keys and Amanda Davis for all the suggestions and guidance on the programme.

Looking forward to seeing you in Singapore.

Jude Stern, Programme Co-Chair,
Head of Knowledge, IAPB