NEW ORLEANS — The oft-repeated Cajun expression in this fun loving town, ”laissez les bon temps roulez,” translated as let the good times roll may be an accurate way of summarizing the upbeat mood at this year’s annual meeting of the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO; San Francisco).
The AAO is by far the largest ophthalmic meeting of each year, typically drawing in excess of 25,000 persons from around the world. Notwithstanding the stringent regulatory climate at the FDA, reimbursement cuts and a decline in access to traditional funding sources like venture capital, the ophthalmic surgery field has generally fared much better than other medical device sectors.
Preceding the AAO was the fifth annual Ophthalmology Innovation Summit (OIS), which was organized by International Business Forum (Massapequa, New York). Attendance by more than 800 persons was very impressive and further solidified its stated purpose of supporting innovation by facilitating deal-flow and business partnerships between CEOs of young companies, investors, corporate executives, physicians and academic scientists in the field of ophthalmology.