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EnVision Summit 2024: Family time and eye care take center stage


Cecelia Koetting, OD, FAAO, DIPABO chats with Optometry Times about her role with EnVision Summit's new optometry program and the excitement surrounding the event.

EnVision Summit, already known for its unique integration of the family unit into its programs, just got more expansive this year with the addition of an optometry program. Cecelia Koetting, OD, FAAO, DIPABO, sat down with Optometry Times to chat about this year's event, running from February 16 to 19.

Video Transcript

Editor's note: This transcript has been lightly edited for clarity.

Emily Kaiser Maharjan:

Hi, everyone. Today I'm here with Cecelia Koetting, one of the co-chairs of the 2024 EnVision Summit Optometry Program. Welcome, Dr. Koetting, good to see you, as always.

Cecelia Koetting, OD, FAAO, DIPABO: Hi, good to see you as well.

Kaiser Maharjan: Of course. So first, can you tell me what drew you to help kickstart the EnVision Summit Optometry Program?

Koetting: I actually was brought in by a friend of mine, who had been speaking with Bonnie [An Henderson, MD, cofounder of EnVision Summit] at the last EnVision Summit, and Jen Lyerly, [OD,] who's a fellow optometrist, and she went last year and really was very overwhelmed by how amazing the conference was, and wanted to see how we could get optometry more involved. Jennifer Lyerly wasn't able to really devote the time this year to help build up the program, so she brought myself and a couple other people into chat with Bonnie. So here we are, 6 months later, where we're really starting to get this built up.

Kaiser Maharjan: Fantastic. Can you share what it is about the meeting that attracted you?

Koetting: The meeting itself is inclusive, it's inclusive of family and I think that that's really interesting. It's very different, as opposed to many of the conferences that we go to that are in these really fun places (such as Puerto Rico, where we're going) [that] unfortunately don't lend themselves to family really getting to spend time with us as the doctors while we're in class. So EnVision is actually open to family. If kids want to come in and hang out with us while we're in the lecture hall, they're invited. Family members are allowed to come to the meals and spend time with us. So I thought that was just a really different, unique vibe that EnVision offers. Yeah, absolutely. It makes it very welcoming, very cozy, very homey. Yeah, and now I want optometry to be part of it. We really want it to be where it's cohesive, not just optometry, ophthalmology. Eventually as time goes on, that's kind of more of the pipeline dream, but right now we've got it so that all classes on the MD track and the OD track are actually both going to be COPE and CME approved, so that everybody is encouraged to criss-cross and go to whatever course sounds interesting.

Kaiser Maharjan: Yeah, I think that's a fantastic idea. So you're participating in the hot topics rapid-fire session on coolest cases. Can you give us a little sneak peek on what you're bringing to the table?

Koetting: Yeah, so we got all of the 5 female optometrists that are there lecturing, including myself. We will be kind of going through a smorgasbord because if you've looked at the lineup, we have women who are top of their game in so many different respects that it's going to be fun. We're going to be looking at nevuses and melanomas, we're going to be talking about diplopia. I know you don't love it, but believe me, it'll be fun. We're also getting into some retinal issues as well. So again, we're just kind of going all over the place here with it.

Kaiser Maharjan: That sounds so cool. I'm so excited to hear more. Do you have any other panels or programs that you're not participating in that you're particularly excited to see?

Koetting: Yeah, since I got to have a little hand and how this went, I kind of was like, "Well, what makes me interested?" or pulling people from other places I've seen that I think are phenomenal speakers and women that I think, again, are just able to deliver this great content and really make it useful for us. So both Dr [Carolyn] Majcher and [Sherrol] Reynolds are going to be there speaking about retina and updating us on what's changing with geographic atrophy and diagnosis and treatment. I'm really excited to hear them talk about that. The other one, which is completely left field, actually, is Dr Jackie Theis and Sara Etheredge, who is actually an occupational therapist. I actually heard them in Ireland do a live panel with a patient where they brought the patient in to do traumatic brain injury assessment and neurological assessment, and then also looking at it from an occupational therapist direction, and figuring out why this patient was having so much trouble. It's just a really neat application of things that we can do, that we may not otherwise be doing. So, if you can't tell, I'm really excited to get to learn from them again.

Kaiser Maharjan: Absolutely, I mean, it sounds like there's a lot to learn about that. They're such rock stars, so it'll be so cool.

Koetting: They are, yeah.

Kaiser Maharjan: So kind of turning away from education and moving towards extracurriculars, are there any elements outside of the education portion that you're eager to explore?

Koetting: Well, yes, I am. The yoga classes which will be taught by yours truly. Occasionally you guys have maybe heard that that's one of the things they do. I've taught before at some other conferences, and I was happy enough to find a home for time for me to lead classes both for the optometrists and family. So there is adult yoga on Saturday, Sunday morning, and then there's family yoga on Monday. Friday, I will be hanging out with the kiddos and doing young adult yoga.

Kaiser Maharjan: That sounds so, so fun. I'm a little jealous, but it'll be great. Is there anything else that you'd like to share that we haven't touched on?

Koetting: I think it's just going to be a great conference and great collaboration. I'm really excited. If you know, people haven't heard about this yet, go look it up. Come join us. If you don't come this year, definitely come hang out with us next year, because I think this is something that we'd like to see long term grow and turn into something just, like I said, really collaborative between both optometry and ophthalmology.

Kaiser Maharjan: Absolutely, and that collaboration is always so, so wonderful. So thank you so much for taking the time to chat today, Dr Koetting, it's been a pleasure.

Koetting: Absolutely. Take care.

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