The Academy's educational programs are developed for ophthalmologists who have the educational foundation of medical school, internship, and residency as a basis for understanding the knowledge that is presented during the Annual Meeting. These programs are presented to ensure better patient care by Academy members. Accordingly, the American Academy of Ophthalmology does not permit attendance or participation by optometrists at any educational activity at its Annual Meeting. While some optometrists may have legitimate reasons for wishing to attend educational programs taught by ophthalmologists, others have used these programs in an attempt to legitimize their claims for expanded scope-of-practice legislation. Academy members have no ethical obligation to assist in these educational efforts. Notwithstanding its Annual Meeting policy, the Academy has no desire to interfere with legitimate practices of its members, and it does not have a policy prohibiting the teaching of optometrists by its members. This Information Statement is intended to give members some background information to consider if they are asked to teach surgical procedures to optometrists, or if they become aware that other Academy members are doing so
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