SYDNEY APAO MEETING SEES HISTORIC MERGER OF REGIONAL GLAUCOMA GROUPS
The Asia Pacific Glaucoma Society was formed by the joining of the South East Asia Glaucoma Interest Group (SEAGIG), Asia-Oceanic Glaucoma Society (AOGS) and Asian Angle Closure Glaucoma Club (AACGC). The historic agreement was signed at the APAO meeting in Sydney in March 2011.
Negotiations for the merger were lead by Paul Healey (SEAGIG Treasurer and AOGS Regional Representative) and conducted over 3 years, culminating in the signing ceremony in Sydney. “Each society has its own unique culture and focus” said Professor Healey. “Bringing them together required finding a path which everyone was happy to follow but also leading to an organisation greater than those it replaces.”
A committee comprising the Presidents and Secretaries of SEAGIG, AOGS and AACGC developed the aims and structure of the Asia-Pacific Glaucoma Society over numerous meetings. The committee comprised Prin Rojanapongpun and SK Fang from SEAGIG, Makoto Araie and Catherine Liu from AOGS, and Tetsua Yamamoto and Ki Ho Park from AACGC. A joint SEAGIG/AOGS/AACGC Board then worked through the issues.
As part of the new spirit of co-operation, Taipei hosted the first ever joint scientific meeting of the three societies in December 2010. This was also the deadline for everyone to agree to proceed with the merger and formation of the Asia-Pacific Glaucoma Society. A Steering committee chaired by Professor Healey oversaw the final steps in the formation of the Asia-Pacific Glaucoma Society as a legal entity and registered charity.