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When Jacqueline Warren was awarded the 2023 OV/SA Optometrist of the Year, she was applauded for her persistence in advocating for optometrists at the highest level, including at Parliament House, Canberra. One year later we caught up with Jacqueline, who strongly encourages nominations for the 2024 Awards.

Jaqueline was also recognised for ground-breaking pilot programs including the Modbury project and establishing a collaborative model of care in South Australia, which is directly playing a part in reducing the public ophthalmology waiting lists. This includes clearing the waitlist for diabetic eye examinations in Southern Adelaide.

Upon accepting the Award in 2023, Jacqueline said, ‘As OV/SA Optometrist of the Year, I intend to ensure that the model of optometry delivered in Australia is designed to best service our community, from the policy level all the way to the community optometrist and their patients.’

We caught up with Jacqueline recently and found she is well underway in achieving this and much more.

Jacqueline, what has been your involvement with the CEPOS and advocacy projects in 2024? 

I am currently working on the continued expansion of the Collaborative Eye Care Project for Ophthalmology (CEPOS) in South Australia. In early March this year, we expanded the project to include medication toxicity and glaucoma screenings. We are also investigating avenues for further expansion with Flinders Ophthalmology.

I continue to advocate in this space, aiming for further expansion of the model of care to other local health networks across South Australia. To enhance such advocacy efforts, I commenced my PhD earlier this year, investigating the effectiveness of the CEPOS collaborative model of care. It’s important that we have solid data to demonstrate outcomes for future discussions with key stakeholders and to secure funding.

How has winning the OV/SA Optometrist of the Year Award helped your career?

The Award undoubtedly helped motivate me to continue to work hard in the advocacy space, to ensure timely access to care is achievable for all Australians.

What encouragement can you offer members to nominate for the 2024 OV/SA Optometrist of the Year Award?

There are so many unsung heroes in the Optometry community, doing the hard yards and making a difference. I encourage all OV/SA members to consider nominating themselves or those around them who are making a difference. Their hard work deserves to be recognised.

Nominate by 5 July for the 2024 Optometrist of the Year Award here.



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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.