The Council of the American Academy of Ophthalmology
The Council of the American Academy of Ophthalmology serves an advisory role to the AAO Board of Trustees by providing a mechanism for the state societies and subspecialty societies to coordinate and communicate their common issues to the Board.
The Council's voting membership consists of representatives of the 50 states, District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, 24 subspecialty societies and special interest societies, and 5 additional limited- voting specialized interest societies designated as Associate Councilors, which include the AOS, ABO, ARVO, EBAA, and the Canadian Ophthalmologic Society.
Although the traditional role of the American Academy of Ophthalmology has always been academic and addresses the "life-long education of ophthalmologists," the Council in contrast is primarily involved with the socio-economic, governmental, political, and legislative concerns of the AAO membership.
Since the mission of the American Ophthalmological Society is the "advancement of ophthalmic art and science," and the AOS annual meetings purely academic and collegial, the AOS councilors' semi-annual reports prior to the Council meetings are, by necessity, very limited. The Associate
Councilor's role is also limited since it is non-voting during the most important and definitive deliberations, which proceed as Council Advisory Recommendations (CARs) to the Board of Trustees.
The Council meets twice yearly in conjunction with the annual Academy meeting and also during the
Mid-Year Forum, which is always held in Washington, DC in April. The Council requires that the designated Representative or Alternate Councilor of each society be present at each meeting and provide semi-annual reports. The AOS also requires an annual report prior to its yearly meeting.
The Mid-Year Forum requires a CME registration fee, but the Academy will reimburse travel and lodging expenses. AOS representation on the Council has history and value but the reports of
Council meetings to the AOS have more limited value since they are only included in the AOS proceedings many months afterward, and all of the relevant information is provided through the
Academy and its Government Relations Office.
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