The best of the UK optical profession was celebrated at the ninth annual AOP Awards last month.
Recognising outstanding work across 15 categories, the AOP Awards 2020 celebrated achievements across the full breadth of optics, from locum practitioners to charities, health and wellbeing initiatives, and hospital teams.
Professor Martin Rubinstein took away the Lifetime Achievement Award, which he called “a great honour.”
The Optometry-Led Glaucoma and Urgent Care Service Team at Moorfields Eye Hospital won the Hospital Optometry Team of the Year award. Dr Vijay Anand, deputy head of optometry at Moorfields Eye Hospital, called winning the award “the culmination of two years of hard effort.”
Prinal Patel, who won the Locum of the Year accolade, said that the award was “the cherry on top” as she celebrates her 10th year as a locum optometrist.
The ceremony was hosted by broadcaster, comedian and campaigner Dr Phil Hammond, with attendees at London’s ExCeL enjoying a drinks reception, dinner and live entertainment.
Nominees were shortlisted by a panel of expert judges before being put forward to a public vote. Winners in two categories, Frame of the Year and Product of the Year, were chosen exclusively by AOP members.
As in previous years, the Lifetime Achievement Award was selected by AOP chief executive Henrietta Alderman, and AOP chairman, Mike George.
Ms Alderman said: “The AOP Awards shines a spotlight on the extraordinary individuals and teams who are propelling the profession forward with their knowledge, expertise, dedication and passion.”
“This year is no different – with all the winners, and indeed finalists, giving an impressive account for optometry,” she highlighted.
The full list of winners is as follows:
Charity of the Year – Macular Society
Contact Lens Practitioner of the Year – Dipesh Chhatralia
Dispensing Optician of the Year – Sarah Grant, Clearview Opticians
Frame of the Year – Walter & Herbert by Optoplast Actman Eyewear
Health and Wellbeing Initiative of the Year – Coleman Opticians Hearing and Vision Centre
Hospital Optometry Team of the Year – Optometry-Led Glaucoma and Urgent Care Service Team at Moorfields Eye Hospital
Lecturer of the Year – Dr Rakhee Shah, City, University of London
Lifetime Achievement Award – Professor Martin Rubinstein
Locum of the Year – Prinal Patel
Newly-qualified Optometrist of the Year – Adam Matthews
Optometrist of the Year – Dr Saleel Jivraj
Practice of the Year – Specsavers Derby
Practice Team Member of the Year - Lorraine Richmond, Lynne Fernandes Optometrists
Product of the Year – Acuvue Oasys with Transitions by Johnson & Johnson Vision
Student of the Year – Emily Mather.
Watch the winners’ reactions below:
The awards took place on Sunday, 26 January, as part of 100% Optical. The headline sponsor for the 2020 AOP Awards was CooperVision.
For more information about the AOP Awards, visit the AOP website.