Just when I thought there was some sense of normality returning.

This week, the adapted stage 2 assessments for pre-reg optometrists began apace after a long hiatus. With a combination of PPE-shielded direct observation in practice and Zoom-based viva-style discussions of case scenarios, I believe the College has done a good job under very difficult circumstances.

Also this week, the excellent annual conference of the American Academy of Optometry begins. Originally planned for Nashville, the adapted event is now online so I will still be able to run some reports of what to look out for. Historically, the AAO event has proved a useful crystal ball for what may hit the UK in future. I saw my first OCT here, many years before they were seen in UK community practices. My sadness at missing a trip to the US is tempered by my having to miss a country and western themed social evening; so not all bad then.

Important optometry research continues apace, albeit overshadowed by Covid. I noticed, for example, an excellent paper in Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science confirming what many of us suspected; that ‘children with amblyopia scored lower than control subjects on the manual dexterity, aiming and catching, and balance tasks.’ School screening for lazy eyes was phased out under the assumption that there was no evidence of impact upon development with monocular blur. Perhaps we can cite this when next call for universal child vision screening?

But… just when I thought there was some sense of normality returning, I see a highly infectious Covid sufferer taking off his mask, implying on camera that he can beat the virus, and entering a busy building. Why do I keep hearing a voice shouting ‘four legs good, two legs better’?