On June 6, 2023, the Association of Malaysian Optometrists (AMO) organized an exhibition and eye screening program for Malaysian Members of Parliament and parliamentary staff at the Parliament of Malaysia. This programme was initiated in accordance with the recommendation of the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB). The objective was to lobby lawmakers and policymakers, emphasizing the role of Optometrists and their importance in achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDG) for Malaysia, specifically in preventing blindness.
In addition, this event provided AMO with an opportunity to highlight the current challenges faced by Malaysian Optometrists to those in positions of power. Firstly, the recognition of Optometrists as primary eye care providers was emphasized to decision-makers. Secondly, AMO requested the government to differentiate Optometrist services from regular optical retail activities. Lastly, AMO is currently collaborating with the Malaysian government to classify qualified private Optometrists as Community Optometrists, a term that will clearly identify these private practitioners to the public.
AMO would like to express its deepest appreciation to all parties involved in making this programme a success, including Dr. Zaliha Mustafa, the Health Minister of Malaysia, for her unwavering support in embracing Malaysian Optometrists. A big thank you goes out to all the volunteers and sponsors for their assistance with the parliamentary screening programme.