About WGPA (World Glaucoma Patient Association)
The WGPA is an organization that is evolving. We officially had our start with the encouragement of and under the auspices of the Association of International Glaucoma Societies and are a logical offshoot of this group. Our organizational meeting occurred at the
Academy of Ophthalmology Conference held October 2004 in
New Orleans, USA. At that gathering, we were honored to have glaucoma patients, national support group representatives, world-renowned ophthalmologists and individuals from full-service glaucoma foundations. We were also fortunate enough to have key attendees from the ophthalmic pharmaceutical firms.
We should add that geographically the 20 representatives at this organizational meeting hailed from all corners of the globe:
Asia, and the Americas, both North and South. In break out sessions it was determined that building a website was the number one priority. Many of those with us at that time agreed to serve as officers and/or significant members of the original organizing committee. Those individuals remain dedicated to this day.
This auspicious group has accepted the challenge of establishing a worldwide organization that will provide a number of services. We are designed to assist glaucoma patients in managing the disease that is silently stealing the eyesight of so many. We see our charge as being an umbrella or framework to dispense useful information to individuals, health care providers and support-type bodies that are devoting their efforts to the fight against glaucoma.
The information offered may take many varied forms, and prove to be useful individually or in combination. We may be creating awareness, serving as an advocate body and/or directing people to educational information available from local or national support groups in a wide breadth of areas. In a broad-brush fashion, we believe that our efforts will highlight the need for appropriate and timely eye care as well as elevate the understanding of glaucoma as a dangerous eye affliction. Outreach to both patients and ophthalmologists will assuredly accomplish this objective.
There are so many areas and countries in the world that do not have patient support groups and sorely need them. We serve as advocates to encourage both ophthalmologists and their patients to step forward to assume these critically needed roles. We feel strongly that every country should have such a group and that a primary group can be the umbrella for said country.
We are a newly founded organization that is deeply committed to and passionate about the multi-pronged mission we have adopted. We believe that there are numerous constituencies that will clearly benefit from our outreach and undertakings.
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