Eye Care Awareness Month (ECAM) commenced on 21 September 2021 and ended on 18 October 2021, with World Sight Day which took place on 14 October 2021. As previously advised, the theme for ECAM 2021 was all about #LoveYourEyes.
The International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB), with the support of its partners, including the SAOA, intended to deliver the biggest and most ambitious ECAM campaign yet, by encouraging everyone to take care of their own eye health. To this end, our aim was to get 1 million people to have their eyes tested and make sure that EVERYONE COUNTS and pledge to #LoveYourEyes. We encouraged our members throughout the country to pledge the number of eye screenings and examinations they conduct between 21 September – 18 October.
We will continue encouraging members of the public to pledge to have their eyes examined, as well as organisations who can encourage their employees to get their eyes tested and pledge these as well. Pledges, report-backs, photos, etc can be forwarded to email@example.com or by completing the pledge form by clicking on the button below.
The SAOA financial year runs from 1 October to 30 September each year. During the past year, the SAOA took the professions of optometry and dispensing opticianry to another level in difficult circumstances. Achievements during this period included the introduction of revised professional procedures, the orchestration of Covid 19 vaccinations for optometrists, dispensing opticians and staff, guidance relating to compliance of both POPIA and PAIA within stipulated timelines, ‘More than 11001’ webinar series, cessation of random audits by GEMS and Opticlear, recognition of optometry and dispensing opticians as ‘essential services ‘amongst others. In addition, the SAOA submitted responses to draft regulations relating to the Certificate of Need and online sale of optical devices and contributed to the HPCSA strategic review. To view an overview of activities and achievements during the past year, click here.
Challenging times do lie ahead. In the year 2022, changing concepts are anticipated which include new regulations, the ‘quantified self’, digital technologies and new entrants which have the potential to disrupt delivery models. These are some of our predictions that, if they come true, will shake up the health care industry, and indeed the eye care arena, in the next five years. The importance of the role of the SAOA to continue to represent and protect the rights of the professions of optometry and dispensing opticians is considerably amplified. To this end, the SAOA has planned to deploy resources and has arranged capacity across the spectrum of portfolios which include Private Practice, Public Health, Education and Clinical Standards, Marketing, Special Projects and Ethics. Objectives for the new fiscal period as well as a calendar of events will be made available to members in due course.
MEMBERSHIP FEES: 2022
Despite the planned intensification of effort on behalf of and for the benefit of our members, we are pleased to advise members that, for the eighth consecutive year, membership fees will not be increased for the 2021/2022 financial year. Invoices are in the process of being disseminated to all.
Please take note of our Early Bird offer. You will be entitled to a 10% discount if the full membership fee is paid by 31 December 2021. Click on the links below to view fees and benefits for 2022: Membership Fees Membership Benefits
IMPORTANT REMINDER: You will be invoiced separately by the insurance brokers. The indemnity insurance policy is for a calendar year. Any queries in this regard are to be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
REDUCED MEMBERSHIP FEES: FIRST TIME SELF- EMPLOYED AND FIRST-TIME EMPLOYED PRACTITIONERS
The SAOA is always seeking ways of assisting members and adding value. In this regard we are pleased to announce special arrangements for first-time self- employed members as well as first-time employed in both the private and public sectors.
For the members concerned, reduced fees as stated in the attached fee structure are for a period of three years. To view the fees,click here.
Should you have any queries in this regard, please contact Lucky Nkosi on 0742434261 or via email -email@example.com.
CHANGE IN MEMBERSHIP CATEGORY
Membership categorisation within the SAOA systems, with related benefits and fees, is based on membership application. In other words, membership details are captured and managed as per details provided by members.
Should a membership category require change, we are totally reliant on such advice from members e.g., if a full practicing member (practice owner) sells his/her practice and is then retained as an employee by the new owner, the member would then simply inform the office of the change and the change of category will be implemented accordingly. Members who wish to change their categories due to change in personal circumstances can do so via email - firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
The above relates to all forms of membership categories which includes age related categories. In this regard, members are requested to advise the SAOA office of the requested category change during the year the member reaches the specified age, but only to be implemented the following year.
At this time, there are two age-related member categories, namely:
65 years +
70 years +
Examples: if a member turns 70 in August 2021, then he/she will be entitled to the ‘70 years +’ membership benefit in the 2021/2022 financial year which commences on 1 October 2021.
If the member turns 70 in December 2021, the member will only qualify for the ’70 years + “as from 1 October 2022.
ADJUSTED LOCKDOWN LEVEL 1
Adjusted Lockdown Level 1 was instituted by Government as of 1 October 2021. In this regard, all employers are reminded to adopt measures to promote safety in the workplace including:
enabling employees to work from home or minimising the need for employees to be physically present at the workplace, as far as possible.
the provision for adequate space to accommodate social distancing.
restrictions on face- to- face meetings.
special measures for employees with known or disclosed health issues or comorbidities, or with any condition which may place such employees at a higher risk of complications or death if they are infected with COVID-19, and
special measures for employees above the age of 60 who are at a higher risk of complications or death if they are infected with COVID-19.
SA's DIGITAL VACCINE CERTIFICATE LAUNCHED WITHOUT FANFARE
SA's digital COVID-19 vaccine certificate, which features a scannable QR code, has been launched by the Department of Health. The COVID-19 Vaccine Certificate System went live, without announcement, on Tuesday (5 October).
HPCSA DISCIPLINARY COMMITTEE RULINGS FOR THE THIRD QUARTER OF 2021
A doctor fined for sexual impropriety, another for a spurious medical certificate, and a third for failing to diagnose herpes; a dentist fined for failing to adhere to fundamental principles; and two optometrists who submitted fraudulent claims. To view an overview of recent findings by the disciplinary committees of the Health Professions Council of SA, click here.
PROFESSIONALS NEED TO PROTECT THEIR PRACTICES FROM UPHEAVALS
The recent public lootings and riots have highlighted the need for professionals running a business or healthcare practice to protect their investments or assets, writes PPS. To read more click here.
SPEAKERS: Dr Niemah Khan & Mr Peter Brauer Date: Thursday 21 October 2021 | Time: 18h30 to 20h30
Completion of the Questionnaire allows you to CHOOSE the Webinars that are of interest to you and MUST NOT be seen as Registration to the Webinar. REGISTRATION is REQUIRED FOR EVERY WEBINAR to ensure access.
NOTE: Upon receipt of the email with the LINK from firstname.lastname@example.org, you are required to: Step 1:Click button below to view all topics Step 2:Complete the 3 questions Step 3. Submit the form to ensure acceptance of your registration . The unique password will be sent to join the webinar.
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