Retina SA AGM hosted by Bayer South Africa

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The annual general meeting (AGM) of Retina South Africa took place on Saturday, 12 August.

Retina South Africa is a registered patient-driven non-profit organisation which supports research for patients with a wide range of retinal conditions. The organisation also facilitates genetic testing to identify patients who will benefit from clinical trials and imminent therapy, drives awareness of retinal degeneration, and drives patient education, referrals, and interventions[1].

In addition to the discussions on Retina South Africa’s performance and strategy, the AGM showcased the latest technology and innovation in accessible devices. Motivational Speaker Alani Ferreira, a Paralympic swimmer was joined by Professor John Flannery from UCLA, Berkeley, who gave an update on the latest research into retinal degeneration; and Elizabeth Louw from Guide Dogs, who spoke about the independence that mobility training provides.

“Bayer participates in a number of multi-stakeholder platforms to develop collaborative and impactful solutions for health. Bayer has been working with Retina South Africa for the past four years and this meeting builds on our sustainability priorities that helps to advance Bayer’s health solutions across the world,” said Dr Gcinashe Nqabeni, Policy and Patient Advocacy Manager at Bayer South East West Africa.

“Retina South Africa welcomes Bayer’s support in creating awareness of retinal vision loss. Genetic retinal conditions, age-related macular degeneration and diabetic retinopathy together cause vision loss in over one million South Africans. Awareness, identification, and intervention will help control this major eye health risk,” said Claudette Medefindt, National Secretary at Retina South Africa.

Globally, at least 2.2 billion people have a near or distance vision impairment. In at least one billion – or almost half – of these cases, vision impairment could have been prevented or has yet to be addressed[2]. Bayer continuously pursues collaboration opportunities which help to improve or prevent loss of vision amongst patients with exudative retinal diseases.

“The AGM gives us an opportunity to engage with our members and stakeholders and to reflect on the achievements of the organisation over the past year, make key strategic decisions for the way forward, and hear from some fantastic guest speakers.  We thank Bayer South Africa for their continued support and for hosting us at their offices,” said Manny Moodley, Chairperson at Retina South Africa.

Reach out to headoffice@retinasa.org.za for any enquiries about the event.


[1] https://www.retinasa.org.za/

[2] https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/blindness-and-visual-impairment