Children’s eye specialist named new president of Optometry Ireland

Tania Constable said she is “delighted to have the opportunity to lead Optometry Ireland into what promises to be a period of dynamic change in the profession”


Optometry Ireland (OI) has announced Tania Constable as its new president, succeeding John Weldon.

Constable has worked as a paediatric specialist within the Health Service Executive (HSE) and at Children’s University Hospital (CHI) at Temple Street, in Dublin, for the past five years.

Previously, she worked as an optometrist in both multiple and independent practices and has also spent time as a locum. In 2021, she completed an MSc in clinical optometry.

As OI president, Constable will work towards a greater role for optometrists in public eye care.

She has also stated her commitment to achieving better eye care for children in Ireland.

Constable said: “I am delighted to have the opportunity to lead OI into what promises to be a period of dynamic change in the profession. Optometry can provide a key role in addressing the pressures facing the health system now and into the future.

“The first issue that needs to be addressed is access to public eye care for children, particularly for eight to 16-year-olds, for whom there is no national public scheme.”

She added that OI has previously raised the issue of the lack of a national scheme for the provision of public eye care for children.

“Optometrists are trained, have the required equipment and are available to provide a public programme to older children to improve their health outcomes,” Constable said. “We can alleviate unacceptable waiting times and unsustainable pressure on hospital eye departments and GPs.”

Joining Constable at OI as vice president is Sinéad Ryan, who is qualified in both optometry and pharmacy and has worked in hospital, community and academic roles in both the UK and Ireland for 15 years.

OI CEO, Seán McCrave, said: “I am confident that Tania, assisted by Sinéad, will bring strong initiative. They both bring new experiences and energy to their roles.”

He added: “There are opportunities for optometrists to provide needed capacity to the health system, and they are both focused on progressing this.

“Both I and our council will work closely with them to achieve better eye health for the population, aided by a thriving optometry profession.”