The World Council of Optometry (WCO) and Alcon have partnered to form a global, evidence-based dry eye disease education initiative designed to raise optometrists’ understanding of dry eye etiology and prevalence, diagnosis, and practical management. Dry eye disease is a chronic, painful condition that impacts 1.4 billion people worldwide, with reports of increased occurrence aligning with notable factors such as increasing use of technology, environmental triggers, and an aging population.
WCO President Peter Hendicott MAppSc, PhD said, “We are excited to partner with Alcon in supporting the education of optometrists globally about practical measures to better address dry eye, a condition that without proper diagnosis and treatment can lead to ocular surface disease. July is Dry Eye Awareness Month—the ideal launching point for this year-long program. By raising the conversation around dry eye, the eye care community can collectively improve outcomes from a condition that can significantly affect people’s vision and lives.”
The WCO and Alcon dry eye disease initiative will feature the collected insights of several world-renowned opinion leaders, and a simplification of the latest research covering different aspects of dry eye disease. Each will include related, easy-to-implement educational materials.
“The impact of dry eye on quality of life is comparable to other disabling conditions, and even mild to moderate dry eye can reduce quality of life,” said Carla Mack, OD, MBA, FAAO, FBCLA, Global Head, Professional Affairs for Alcon. “We’ve joined forces with the World Council of Optometry to bring the leading experts in the field and the latest science to the forefront. We’re excited to help more optometrists access the latest data and world-class faculty so that more patients who suffer from dry eye disease find treatment and relief.”
More information, including the names of the faculty, will be available in the coming weeks. Updates will be posted to www.worldcouncilofoptometry.info and to the initiative’s dedicated website, which is in development.
 MarketScope (2020) 2020 Dry Eye Products Market Report. A Global Analysis for 2019 to 2025. October 2020.
 Stapleton F, Alves M, Bunya VY, Jalbert I, Lekhanont K et al. (2017) TFOS DEWS II Epidemiology Report. Ocul Surf 15 (3): 334-365.
 Schiffman RM, Walt JG, Jacobsen G, Doyle JJ, Lebovics G et al. (2003) Utility assessment among patients with dry eye disease. Ophthalmology 110 (7): 1412-1419