Optical Dispensers Australia (ODA) CEO April Petrusma was invited as a guest speaker, to attend the Association of Dispensing Opticians of New Zealand (ADONZ) conference in Tauranga on October 28-30. April attended alongside Communications Manager, Lou Thomas and ACOD Directors, Chedy Kalach and James Gibbins.
To practice as a Dispensing Optician in New Zealand, you must be registered with the Board and hold a current practising certificate. As it is a registered profession, unlike Australia, Dispensing Opticians must complete CPD to prove they are competent to practice. With a requirement to complete 20 CPD points during the 24 month cycle which always finishes on 30 November of an odd numbered year, the 3 day event was a sell out with numerous CPD points available from the conference lectures. Formalities aside, it was a well orchestrated and fun filled 3 day event hosted in the beautiful Bay of Plenty region of New Zealand's North Island, perfectly backdropped by Mount Maunganui. There was a small trade show for networking over meal breaks, a 1950's Gala Dinner celebrating 70 years of ADONZ, a Graduation evening hosted by ACOD to recognise graduating students from the Certificate IV in Optical Dispensing course, as well as the conference lectures.
April gave a one hour CPD lecture on 'Understanding lens and lifestyle needs for patients with presbyopia.' She discussed the Dispensing Opticians role in determining what the true needs of the patient are and how to make the most appropriate recommendations for Progressives, Degressives and Multifocals. There was also consideration given to why the common one size fits all approach is not a suitable course of action and how using patient education to set realistic expectations can be a key factor in empowering the patient to reach a successful outcome. Delegates were then treated to a 'fastest fingers first' quiz at the end that saw the room launch into competition mode to win a prize pack from the ODA online shop. There were plenty of laughs along the way with some serious competitors desperate to take out the win.
The team had such a great time representing Optical Dispensers Australia across the Tasman. It was an absolute pleasure to be part of an event that celebrates Dispensing Opticians and the important role they play in our industry.
Thanks for putting on such a good show ADONZ!