Eye Health Summit Convened
Participants aim to build consensus on public health message
Chicago, IL (July 21, 2009) – Over 110 vision community representatives joined together today at the Eye Health Summit, an event to designed to begin the process of building a strong consensus among interested parties/stakeholders in the vision community on a public health/eye health message. In addition to developing criteria for message points, Summit participants will also outline an implementation plan during the two-day event to deliver the message and integrated support to sustain it.

“The Eye Health Summit promises to be one of the most exciting events the vision and eye health community has witnessed in years,” said Ed Greene, CEO of The Vision Council, the host of the Summit. “By bringing together professional associations, trade associations, major manufacturers, non-profit groups, retailers, vision care plans and government agencies, we hope to take meaningful steps to improving American’s eye health.”

Vision problems are the second most prevalent health problem in the country, affecting more than 120 million Americans. There are currently many messages, sometimes confusing, to consumers about how to best care for their vision health. A unified public health message would potentially mean earlier diagnosis of disease and improved quality of life for many.

Summit participants will join in a facilitated discussion using the Appreciative Inquiry method to gather ideas and build consensus about the best, most positive way for the community to tell the story about advancing public/eye health. Appreciative Inquiry works by engaging groups in identifying and studying what's working well, and applying these positive resources to generate energy and new ideas for resolving complex challenges.

A core planning team of 12 people representing a cross section of the vision community has provided direction for the Summit, developing an agenda and setting goals for the meeting. The core planning team also developed a targeted invitation list of nearly 200 people that includes the leadership and marketing representatives from industry organizations.

Following the Summit, the core planning team will reconvene to review the agreed-to messaging points and to create a plan for moving forward. This plan will include elements from communication strategies to funding. By sharing developments with Summit participants and other interested parties, the core planning team can continually receive and review feedback and comments on the program.

For more information on the Summit, visit www.eyehealthsummit.com.