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Macular Disease Foundation Australia Research Grant Recipient

Dr Isabelle Jalbert
UNSW Australia School of Optometry and Vision Science

Awarded: Blackmores Macular Disease Foundation Australia Research Grant for $100,000 over 2 years.

Project title: Eye care practitioners' and patients' perspectives on age-related macular degeneration (AMD) - identifying barriers and facilitators to optimal AMD care.

Project summary: Modifiable factors such as smoking and lifestyle (e.g. high glycemic index diet or low intake of antioxidants) have been shown to increase the risk of developing age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and the speed at which the disease progresses. Based on these, clear, evidence-based recommendations for people with or at risk of AMD have existed for some time. Yet, self-reported practices suggest that eye care practitioners' advice and adherence to these recommendations in people with AMD can be very poor.

The project proposes to explore the views, knowledge, attitudes and practices of eye care practitioners and people with AMD and their carers.

This project will identify the barriers and facilitators for optimal care as well as knowledge and understanding about various issues including diet, supplementation and lifestyle modifications. This project will identify areas where targeted health interventions should be planned in the future.

About the researcher: Dr Jalbert, OD, MPH, PhD, is Deputy Head of the UNSW Australia School of Optometry and Vision Science, the largest optometry school in Australia. She is internationally recognised as an expert in research into evidence based optometry practice, with a strong record of leading multidisciplinary research.

8 October 2015