Prof Konyama began his medical career in the 1950s and trained in Thailand, Japan, the US. He was a passionate advocate for blindness prevention, for applying epidemiology and for quality in ophthalmology and patient care.
His legacy will endure for many decades to come, particularly through the graduates who studied at the Institute of Public Health in Ophthalmology in Nakorn Ratchasima, Thailand (known as the Korat course). Many of Prof Konyama’s students in Korat have gone on to lead blindness prevention programs in countries across the region, and have prioritised public health.
Prof Konyama helped to strengthen and establish blindness prevention programs in India, Thailand, Mongolia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Vietnam, China, Malaysia and Cambodia to name just a handful.
Prof Konyama worked as a consultant with the World Health Organization in Geneva and Manila and always encouraged inter-country sharing and technical exchanges through workshops and training. He travelled extensively, but his home base was Juntendo University in Tokyo.
He played a big role in VISION 2020’s ultimate impact and roll-out.