August 2016

Society Leadership

Executive Committee

D. Brian Kim, MD

W. Barry Lee, MD

Vice President
Jeff Payne, MD

James Brooks, MD

Immediate Past-President
McGregor Lott, MD

Councilor to AAO
S. Anna Kao, MD

Executive Director
Lasa Joiner


Class of 2017

Elizabeth Crandall, MD
Bret Crumpton, DO
Michael Jacobs, MD
Michael Magbalon, MD
Tassos Costarides, MD, PhD

Class of 2018
G. Baker Hubbard, MD
Jeremy Jones, MD
William Marks, Jr., MD
Randall Ozment, MD
Emory Patterson, MD

Class of 2019
Amy Estes, MD
Nadeem Fatteh, MD
David Hemmings, MD
Tushar Suthar, MD
Margaret Wong, MD

Legislative Chair
Malcolm S. Moore, Jr., MD

PAC Chair
Jeffrey A. Carlisle, MD

Upcoming Events 

AAO's CodeQuest 
September 10, 2016

Code Your Way To A Successful Practice

GEM Meeting 
February 11, 2017

Join us for the GEM Eye meeting at the Westin Hotel, Buckhead.

AAO's Mid-Year Forum and Congressional Advocacy Day in Washington D.C.
April 26-29, 2017

2017 Annual Meeting 
August 4-6, 2017

And start looking forward to next summer at The Ritz Carlton, Amelia Island.














We Want To Hear From You 

If you are interested in contributing to the next edition of the newsletter (i.e. honors, awards, promotions, authorship, or other news of interest) simply send your submission (or submission idea) to:

Eye Openers is GSO's members-only newsletter that focuses on current issues in ophthalmology, member news, association news and updates, legislative issues, practice management, and other subjects of interest to Georgia ophthalmologists.

The GSO does not necessarily endorse the opinions or statements contained in articles or editorials published in Eye Openers.

This is a publication of the
Georgia Society of Ophthalmology
GSO Executive Office
2711 Irvin Way,  Suite #111
Decatur, Georgia 30030
(404) 299 6588


Get To Know a Member of GSO
Featuring: Brian Kim, MD

"While attending Amherst College, I joined an a cappella group called the Zumbyes.  Before joining the group, the most experience I had was singing in the shower, but my friends encouraged me to audition.  (I think they meant it as a practical joke.)  I was very raw with little technical training but the group said I had potential.  The group was comprised of amazing musicians and talented songwriters who transposed well-known songs into a cappella versions.  I still don’t know how they had the time and skill to do all that while being full-time students.  It turns out that I had a decent solo voice and even sang Michael Jackson’s Billy Jean.  I am a tenor II, which means I can sing high, but not choir-boy high.  The group was like a fraternity--sans the smelly frat houses and drinking parties--all of our functions revolved around singing, and it was a blast.  We received invitations from other a cappella groups to sing all across the northeast at various college campuses, and we also toured Chicago, Milwaukee, Miami and Fort Lauderdale.  We even had the good fortune of recording a CD and singing the National Anthem at two Golden State Warriors NBA basketball games.

Singing was a great stress release for me as I endured my premedical studies.  Today, I don’t really sing much, but I will sing for my patients upon request (there was a time when I sang along with Pandora fairly regularly in the OR, and word got out with my patients; some would demand I sing for them because I sang for their friend in surgery--and after all, I have to be fair.) 

The singing eye surgeon was not really the reputation I was after, but I’ll take it!  And I would be happy to sing you a ditty anytime."

Brian Kim, MD
GSO President
Eye Openers Editor

Introducing a New Member Benefit
The GSOnline Professional Recruitment Board

Get the word out about openings in your practice 
The new GSOnline Recruitment Board is a digital forum where members can post listings for current professional opportunities in their practices -- for ophthalmologists, ophthalmic techs, and even administrative positions. 

Only GSO Members Can Post -- Anyone Can Search
Be as specific or as vague as you like. And when someone responds to your post, they reply directly to the email you provide. Confidentiality is ensured. 

Regional Reach
The new GSOnline Professional Recruitment service will be promoted in Georgia and through ophthalmology societies in other states -- helping you reach a wide pool of candidates. Each position stays up on the GSO website for at least 90 days -- unless you fill the position, of course. 

Just click the Place An Ad link and fill out a short form on Here's a look at a real posting that is live right now:

FOR SALE: Well-Established Solo Practice

Well-established ophthalmology practice for sale in Macon, Georgia. This is a long-running practice with a large patient base. This practice operates out of a hospital office location at the HCA facility in Macon, which has an excellent surgical center and provides an on-call group that is available for nights and weekends. The hospital will also help new owner with local advertising to promote growing practice. 

Practice Location:
380 Hospital Drive, Suite 350
Macon, GA 31217

I am very happy to answer all of your questions: (478) 742 5255 

Organization/Company Name

G. Richard Jones, M.D. Private Ophthalmology Practice

Contact Name Contact Phone Number Contact Email Address Date Posted

G. Richard Jones, M.D.

478-742-5255 or 478-477-4618

Phone Preferred

August 2, 2016

Thank You To All Who Attended the 2016 Annual Meeting

GSO members enjoyed another incredible summer meeting in July at the Sea Pines Resort on Hilton Head Island.  The world-renowned visiting faculty was led by George Williams, MD, Chief of Ophthalmology at Oakland University Beaumont School of Medicine, who presented the 2016 Thomas M. Aaberg Lecture, Healthcare Reform: Dollars and Sense. Sanjay Patel, MD, Professor and Chair of the Mayo Clinic, gave presentations on corneal disease and cataract surgery. Jeffrey Kammer, MD, Associate Professor of Ophthalmology, Vanderbilt University lectured about several topics on glaucoma. Additional faculty included Robin Vann, MD, Assistant Professor and Chief of Comprehensive Ophthalmology, Duke Eye Center in North Carolina and Phoebe Lenhart, MD, Associate Professor of Ophthalmology, Emory Eye Center. Congressman Buddy Carter, serving his 1st term in the US House of Representatives, spoke to the attendees at the annual PAC Breakfast. 

GSO's Legal Defense Fund

"When challenges arise that compromise our ability to provide the best care possible to our patients, they often come quickly and unexpectedly. The legal defense fund will provide a mechanism for GSO to act quickly and decisively when needed. I'm encouraging all members of GSO to contribute to the fund in the interest of their practices and of their patients."

​--Sid Moore, MD

The GSO Legal Defense Fund is a rainy day fund dedicated to defending the practice of ophthalmology wherever legal issues arise: in the courts, state agencies, or in the legislative branch.

When Georgia’s eye patients undergo delicate sight-saving procedures, GSO is determined they will be performed by expertly trained ophthalmologic surgeons.  As eye care technology continues to advance and adversaries seek to expand into the surgical realm, costly legal battles are imminent. 

Together, GSO members can fight to guarantee the highest quality standards of treatment in Georgia. For our inaugural year, our goal is to collect $50,000 in member contributions, and we hope that each GSO member will join in and contribute. The more supporters we have, the more united our front—and the more united our front, the more effective our fight. 

Many of your colleagues have already donated to the Legal Defense Fund-- Contribute to the LDF today and show your support for the future of ophthalmology. 

International Ophthalmology: GSO Member Missions

In Kenya
by Jimmy Brooks, MD

I became involved in international mission work while in medical school in 1987; traveling on an ophthalmology mission to Cordoba, Mexico where the team operated on the second floor of a Mexican jail facility. Imagine a three dining room table cataract operating room while outside the window Mexican guards with automatic weapons yelled at inmates…who wouldn’t get sold on ophthalmology and international missions after that experience?!

"...while outside the window, Mexican guards with automatic weapons yelled at inmates...who wouldn't get sold on ophthalmology after that experience?"

There were multiple trips to Mexico, Guatemala, eastern Europe and a few other countries over the years, but about 10 years ago I became aware of the need for corneal surgeons (and corneal tissue) at the Lighthouse for Christ in Mombasa, Kenya. The Lighthouse has been providing ophthalmic care since 1969, and currently performs over 32,000 outpatient visits and more than 2,000 surgical procedures annually.  The mission continues to grow and now employs two full-time Kenyan ophthalmologists, one part-time ophthalmologist, and three clinical officers trained in SICS (small incision cataract surgery). Eye camps are routinely held in surrounding rural areas, and patients are transported to the Lighthouse for vision-restoring surgery. From a corneal standpoint, there is an inordinate amount of keratoconus (primarily due to genetics and a high incidence of allergic eye disease and environmental factors with much eye rubbing); however, traumatic and infectious corneal scarring and bullous keratopathy are also much more common than in developed countries.  

I typically travel to Mombasa at least once a year, acting as my own mule by transporting in my carry-on bag corneal tissue graciously donated by Georgia Eye Bank (or from other banks coordinated by GEB); surprisingly, only once have I been asked to open the carry-on for inspection, and in that instance the customs official in Nairobi said, “Oh, Lighthouse in Mombasa…..carry on!”  Tissues are quickly utilized, and usually about 60 to 90 patients are examined in order to select the most pressing and appropriate 20 or so surgical candidates.  PKP is the norm as many of the patients have corneal.

In 2015, we initiated an effort to make corneal care in Mombasa more self-sustaining and less dependent on foreign ophthalmologists.  This strategy includes: 1) a Lighthouse Kenyan ophthalmologist, Dr. Frederic Korir, has been sent to Aravind Hospital in India where he is completing a corneal fellowship; 2) the GEB and Alabama Eye Bank have started shipping corneal tissue quarterly to Mombasa to provide a more sustained supply of tissue; and 3) X-Cel Specialty Ophthalmics partnered with us to hold a specialty contact lens training course at the Lighthouse in March of 2016, providing the first ever specialty fitting course in Kenya, with primary focus on keratoconus and aphakia in pediatric patients.

Thanks to these many generous partners cornea care in eastern Kenya is becoming more readily available, improving vision, and changing lives. For more information on the Lighthouse please visit There is no greater way to enrich our own lives than by giving to the least of these.

In Honduras
by Kyle Coffey, MD

Honduras is one of the poorest countries in the Western Hemisphere and has the lowest cataract surgery rate in Latin America. 160,000 people are blind from cataract in this country that is only a few airline hours away from many parts of the United States. Ophthalmologist Alan Kozarsky became aware of this problem more than 20 years ago and has been volunteering his time and talent ever since to improve the fortunes of blind people in Honduras. Dr. Kozarsky began leading regular cataract surgery brigades to various parts of the country in the early 1990s. Each brigade restored sight for more than 100 cataract blind patients, and often included a few cornea transplants thanks to Georgia Eye Bank. An avid pilot, Alan would frequently transport donated supplies, equipment, and brigade volunteers in his own airplane. 

In 2008, Dr. Kozarsky co-founded ECHO Foundation (Eradicating Cataracts Honduras Outreach) with friend and fellow pilot Kyle Coffey. The two became interested in making sustainable impacts to grow the sector of ophthalmology in Honduras, and partnered with Emory University's Social Enterprise @ Goizueta (SE@G) in 2011. The group spent an entire year researching ophthalmology in Honduras with the help of graduate and undergraduate students from both the Goizueta Business School and the Rollins School of Public Health. 

ECHO formed another strategic partnership in 2013 with the San Pedro Sula Lions' Hospital Fraternidad, a local non-profit eye hospital. Hospital Fraternidad was doing great work for the poorest Hondurans, but was severely handicapped due to a lack of adequate surgical and diagnostic resources. ECHO and SE@G formulated a plan to make strategic infrastructure improvements to support growth in surgical volumes over a three-year period. Hospital Fraternidad also became the exclusive site for Dr. Kozarsky's ECHO surgery brigades, which augment the efforts of local ophthalmologists approximately four weeks per year. Dr. Kozarsky has been joined in this endeavor by a growing cadre of private-practice ophthalmologists from the United States.

As of 2015, ECHO's sustainable impacts have more than doubled annual cataract surgery volumes at Hospital Fraternidad. The 1,075 cataract surgeries performed at Hospital Fraternidad last year represent 25% of all cataract surgeries performed by non-profits in Honduras, 12% of all cataract surgeries performed in the country, and a 7% increase in national cataract surgery volumes. Hospital Fraternidad is on track to have another record-shattering year in 2016. Thanks to ECHO Foundation's and Dr. Kozarsky's efforts, the future is getting brighter for many visually impaired Hondurans. For more information, please visit 

Welcome New GSO Members 

Nadeem Fatteh, MD

Horizon Eye Center


Jennifer Kim, MD

Clayton Eye Center


Micheal Minix, Jr., MD

Eyesight Associates

Warner Robins

Andrea Prosser, MD

Augusta University


David Sackel, MD, MBA

Thomas Eye Group, PC

Sandy Springs

Anand Shah, MD

Eye Associates of North Atlanta