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OQNT Early Career Optometrists Seminar in collaboration with
The Eye Health Centre

Date: Wednesday, 7th August 2024.

Optometry Queensland Northern Territory is proud to present ‘Early Career Optometrist seminar’ sponsored by The Eye Health Centre.

This is an ECO event, held at Brisbane’s one-of-a kind entertainment precinct, Victoria Park. The CPD program, featuring TEHC speakers will provide Therapeutic and Interactive content over a 2-course dinner.


Time Session
6:00pm Registration
6:30pm OA Update
Presenter – Luke Arundel





Session 1: Meet The Eye Health Centre Doctors
Presenters: Dr Andrew Apel, Dr John Hogden, Dr Gurmit Uppal
Intro to The Eye Health Centre – our doctors & services.
Learning Objectives:

  • To build relationships with surgeons, Dr Andrew Apel, Dr John Hogden, Dr Gurmit Uppal for effective co-management of patients.
  • To further knowledge on available services and technology for improved patient compliance and care



Session 2: The perfect eye
Presenter: Dr Gurmit Uppal
Latest innovation in technology – 3D eye modelling in virtual reality.
Learning Objectives:

  • To further advance knowledge in the emerging role VR technology can play in assisting patient understanding and interactive care for better patient outcomes.




Session 3: Perfecting the art of referrals
Presenters: Dr Andrew Apel, Dr John Hogden
Writing a good referral -Recommended workup by community optometrist when referring.
Learning Objectives:

  • To further advance knowledge in the best practice and requirements for a thorough referral to ensure the best patient experience and services provided.
  • To learn importance of the impact the quality of the referral has on the patient outcomes.





Session 4: Excellence in patient care: Strategies for superior management
Presenters: Dr Andrew Apel, Dr John Hogden
Patient Care and Management: Collaborative care
-Diagnosing and triaging referrals for “different” eye conditions
-Referral process, timing, urgency, priority, and care standards
-Post-operative care for patients undergoing various eye procedures
Learning Objectives:

  • To further advance knowledge in the diagnosis, management and treatment of posterior and anterior conditions for community optometrists to understand patient co-management.










Session 5: Therapeutic cases
Presenters: Dr Andrew Apel, Dr John Hogden
Therapeutic cases which will be presented and discussed
1- Allergic conjunctivitis
2- Bacterial conjunctivitis
3- Dry eye
4- Fungal keratitis
5- Epithelial basement membrane dystrophy Disorder
Learning Objectives:

  • To understand therapeutic management of allergic conjunctivitis and red flag symptoms vernal keratoconjunctivitis
  • To learn about Infectious versus non-infectious corneal issues and best practice in therapeutic management.
  • To understand advanced preoperative dry eye management for optimal postoperative outcomes and patient satisfaction
  • To understand symptoms and signs of fungal keratitis and available therapeutic treatment options
  • To understand potential pre-surgical therapeutic treatments for epithelial basement membrane dystrophy







Session 6: Pop Quiz – Optom’s Choice: What Would You Do?
Presenters: Dr Andrew Apel, Dr John Hogden, Dr Gurmit Uppal

1-Red eye
2- Retinal detachment
3-Anterior growths – benign and malignant
4-Possible Corneal Graft Rejection
Learning Objectives:

  • To further advance knowledge in patient care, specifically in the less common presentations community optometrist may see
  • Identifying the correct protocol for the less common presentations
  • To further advance knowledge in best patient care and ensure the correct protocol and approach is applied



Session 7: Mastering OCT: Seeing Beyond the Surface
Presenters: Dr Andrew Apel, Dr John Hogden
Analysing OCT scans
Learning Objectives:

  • To learn about advancements in imaging technology and the role of OCT in early detection and prevention in community optometry




Session 8: Community resources & closing remarks
Presenters: Dr Andrew Apel, Dr John Hogden
Marketing Liaison support for community optometrists
Learning Objectives:

  • To learn importance of engaging in community resources, such as the TEHC Facebook Group and newsletter, to assist with ongoing learning and better patient outcomes.

CPD: To be advised

Meet the speakers:


Corneal Surgery and External Eye Disease Ophthalmologist

Dr Andrew Apel is an ophthalmologist with additional sub-specialty training in corneal and anterior segment surgery. He is an accomplished, highly -esteemed refractive surgeon with more than 25 years’ experience. He is a fellow of the Royal Australian College of Ophthalmologists. Dr Apel completed a corneal and external disease fellowship program at the university of Toronto in Canada.




Corneal Ophthalmologist, Anterior and Refractive Surgeon

Dr John Hogden is an ophthalmologist with sub-specialty training in external eye disease as well as corneal cataract, anterior segment and refractive surgery. He completed an additional sub-specialty fellowship training – including corneal transplant techniques – at the University of British Columbia Vancouver Eye Care Centre in Canada.




Dr Gurmit Uppal MBBS (Hons), BSc (Hons) MD, FRCOphth (UK), FRANZCO

Consultant Vitreo-Retinal Ophthalmic Surgeon

Dr Uppal is an ophthalmic cataract surgeon and vitreo-retinal specialist with a research background in macular surgery. He undertook his training in London at leading teaching hospitals and his ophthalmic training at the world-renowned Moorfields Eye Hospital, the largest eye centre in Europe. Thereafter he completed a retinal fellowship in vitreoretinal surgery and medical retina at Sydney Eye Hospital. Dr Uppal followed this up with a second vitreo-retinal fellowship at Moorfields Eye Hospital, London further enhancing his experience in retinal disorders, trauma as well as high volume refractive and complex cataract surgery. Dr Uppal moved in 2014 to Brisbane with his wife and two daughters.



Acknowledgement of Country

In the spirit of reconciliation Optometry Australia acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of country throughout Australia and their connections to land, sea and community. We pay our respects to their Elders past and present and extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today.