By Rhiannon Riches
Six expert paediatric optometrists have collaborated to assist Optometry Australia in producing its first Paediatric Eye Health and Vision Care Guidelines for members.
The guidelines were developed over a nine-month period with several teleconferences between the working group and chairman Simon Hanna, Optometry Australia’s national clinical policy adviser.
Mr Hanna said that in creating the first paediatric guidelines for members, Optometry Australia was aiming to target the wider optometric profession, encouraging and enabling more practitioners to provide paediatric clinical services, with tips and referral pathways indicated both to specialists and to experienced paediatric optometrists.
Optometrists Rod Baker, Liz Jackson, Stephen Leslie, Tim Martin, Marissa Megaloconomos and Christine Nearchou formed the working group.
‘Their role was to review and comment, and to suggest changes to the guidelines as a work in progress. From start to finish, the project was written by Optometry Australia’s policy team and the working group members were effectively expert consultants,’ Mr Hanna said.
‘The paediatric guidelines were developed with a full literature review to ensure an evidence-based up to date document, with the intention to review them at an appropriate time,’ Mr Hanna said.
The guidelines are divided into three main parts: infants and toddlers (birth to two years 11 months), pre-school children (three years to six years 11 months), and school-aged children (seven to 14 years).
Paediatric Eye Health and Vision Care Guidelines is a free resource available for the optometry profession.
Download the guidelines at www.optometry.org.au.