Tracking eye disease at population level

29 January 2021
Winter 2021

As coordinator of the Vision Loss Expert Group, Professor Rupert Bourne has helped international bodies access accurate population-based data about eye health. Now he’s turning his attention closer to home.

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In 2007, the Global Burden of Disease Study made an appeal via The Lancet for volunteers to join a group that could provide “population-based data on prevalence of vision loss in order to prepare estimates of disability-adjusted life years (DALYs)”. The body that grew from that – which now numbers more than 100 epidemiology-minded ophthalmologists and optometrists – is the Vision Loss Expert Group (VLEG), the world’s leading epidemiology reference group for eye disease.

Throughout the past 13 years, Professor Rupert Bourne has been the VLEG’s coordinator. Rupert is a population-level eye disease expert, as well as Consultant Ophthalmic Surgeon at Addenbrooke’s Hospital; Lead for the Glaucoma Service at Cambridge University Hospitals Trust; and Director of the Cambridge Eye Research Centre. He is also Professor of Ophthalmology at Anglia Ruskin University.

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