FOR EACH CLS LIVE!, the host sits down with leaders in the world of contact lenses to discuss new and future products, the latest research, and worldwide trends in prescribing. In this broadcast from Nov. 14, Jason Jedlicka, OD, spoke with Jason J. Nichols, OD, MPH, PhD, about the Global Specialty Lens Symposium (GSLS). Now in its 18th year, GSLS 2024 will be held in Las Vegas from Jan. 17-20.
Q: Jason Jedlicka, OD: What are we going to see this year at GSLS?
A: Jason J. Nichols, OD, MPH, PhD: While we certainly like to see growth in the meeting, we also like the family aspect of people bumping into each other, people knowing each other, [and] catching up with colleagues and collaborators and friends across the industry. It’s really our mission to grow while keeping that community engagement.
The key to our success has been a mix of general sessions, workshops, and CE breakouts. We really try and hit the highest of the high notes during those sessions and bring in the biggest names who are doing clinical work or research in those areas. We start the program on Wednesday with the International Forum for Scleral Lens Research collaboration. Then, we jump into workshops that afternoon.
On Thursday morning, we’ll honor our awardees. The GSLS Award of Excellence is going to Jan Bergmanson [OD, PhD, PhD hc, DSc] for his work in specialty lenses, scleral lenses, and the anatomy of the eye. In addition, the GSLS Rising Star Award is going to Kevin Chan [OD, MS] for his emerging work in the field of clinical myopia management. Then, we have our first-ever keynote address by Nathan Efron [AC, DSc, PhD]. That will be followed by what we’re calling “The Great Debate 2.0,” where Dr. Efron and Ed Bennett [OD, MSEd] will get on stage and debate a couple of topics.
Friday’s highlights include a scleral lens workshop in Spanish and English, and a general session on regulatory and ethical considerations and contact lens and specialty contact lenses—the first time we’ve ever done such a session. On Saturday, we’ll wrap up with general sessions on technology in the ocular surface, in addition to cracking the code in myopia management.
Q: Dr. Jedlicka: Having the companies that support us every day at the meeting is great. Can you mention a little bit about the exhibitors at GSLS?
A: Dr. Nichols: Our exhibit hall is among the best. I get the most business done. I get the most education done. And we really can’t thank our sponsors and exhibitors enough. I want to encourage every attendee to visit every single booth this year. It’s so important that we show them the support that they show us
Q: Dr. Jedlicka: Anything else regarding the format or trends we’re going to see?
A: Dr. Nichols: The overarching theme of the meeting is innovations for the future. Every year, CLS surveys its readership about what they want to hear about most next year. For the last three or four years, they’ve said new technologies. So, you’ll see in each of the general sessions and workshops, we tie in the theme of innovation, really looking to technology and all the wonderful technologies we have. For example, this year, we’ve got at least one lecture on artificial intelligence in the contact lens practice, which is [now] a column in Contact Lens Spectrum. CLS