August 2020


ASCRS launches virtual CME series: ‘20/Happy in 2020: The ASCRS Master Class in Refractive Cataract Surgery’

by Ellen Stodola Editorial Co-Director

ASCRS is launching a new master class in refractive cataract surgery. “20/Happy in 2020: The ASCRS Master Class in Refractive Cataract Surgery” is a series of virtual CME symposia featuring lectures, live panel discussions, audience polling, and Q&A sessions. The master class will focus on achieving patient satisfaction in refractive cataract surgery, covering knowledge gaps in practice management, surgeon communication skills, and proper patient selection and counseling. Significant course and discussion time will also be spent on managing complications and patient dissatisfaction.
The series seeks to provide a new model for interactive learning, especially given the necessary changes in clinical education since the COVID-19 pandemic. The curriculum is divided into a series of nine biweekly, 2-hour programs.
Program co-director David F. Chang, MD, said “20/Happy in 2020” will assemble more than 75 leading international faculty. They will lecture and participate in live virtual panel discussions and Q&A sessions with the audience. “We hope that this format will facilitate more substantive virtual interaction with the attendees,” Dr. Chang said. All symposia will be recorded and archived on a dedicated master class website. ASCRS members will also receive a certificate attesting to completion of the nine-part advanced refractive cataract master class.
“The cancellation of most of 2020’s live meetings means that attendees will not be traveling and must look elsewhere to get clinical updates and CME,” Dr. Chang said. “Our virtual live symposia will be on Saturdays so that no clinic time is missed, and attendees can also watch the recorded events at their own convenience and pace.” The pandemic has forced ophthalmologists to reassess their practices, he added, and many are using this as an opportunity to recommit and refocus on refractive cataract surgery and premium IOLs.
According to Kendall Donaldson, MD, program co-director, discussions about the creation of this program have been ongoing for more than a year. “Dr. Chang had the brilliant idea of creating this course to help fill in some of the gaps that are not covered in a typical residency or fellowship program,” she said. “During training we learn the technical skills to perform safe and effective cataract surgery, but we don’t have the time or the access to all of the different expert faculty to learn the science, thought process, and art of refractive surgery as practiced by some of the world’s best surgeons. We’ve been fortunate to gather an amazing faculty to help us with this groundbreaking program.”
The “20/Happy in 2020” program will provide CME education that is evidence-based and takes a generic and balanced approach to most device topics. For product-specific information, corporate-sponsored sessions will complement the main master class symposia. These live non-CME programs will immediately follow the master class symposia and will be recorded and available on the “20/Happy in 2020” website.
The target audience for the virtual series will include residents, fellows, comprehensive ophthalmologists, and experienced refractive cataract surgeons looking to improve their skills. “Because of this unique format, the size and caliber of the faculty, the timing, and several newly approved IOLs, we expect strong attendance reflecting a historical high in refractive IOL interest,” Dr. Chang said.
As far as the virtual aspect of this meeting, Dr. Donaldson said the individual lectures will be pre-recorded but will also have live and interactive components, allowing the attendees to ask questions of renowned surgeons from around the world. “We also wanted to create a class that could be taught in segments that could later be available for reference for the practicing surgeon,” she said. “It may be difficult for someone to tune in on nine Saturdays, but this format will allow them to watch and interact with faculty live when able or have the option to watch later without the interactive component.”
Topics to be covered in the virtual series include “Hitting the Refractive Target,” “Our Refractive IOL Armamentarium,” “Patient Evaluation and Selection,” “Patient Education and Counseling,” “Refractive IOL Practice Management,” “Managing Complications and Patient Dissatisfaction,” “Case Studies in Patient IOL Selection and Management,” “Adjunct Refractive Cataract Technology,” and “What’s Ahead in 2021 and Beyond?” The first webinar will take place on August 15 and then biweekly, with the last one on December 5. Other members of the program committee include Kevin Miller, MD, Vance Thompson, MD, and Sumit “Sam” Garg, MD, who chair the ASCRS Cataract, Refractive Surgery, and Young Eye Surgeons Clinical Committees, respectfully.
“Our hope is that this new program will bring the pearls and art of our faculty to attendees in their own home at a convenient time and as a reference source long beyond the delivery of the program,” Dr. Donaldson said. “We’re very excited to be able to create and deliver this program that we think can be a game changer in the way we teach and practice cataract surgery.”
Visit for more information and to register for “20/Happy in 2020.”

About the doctors

David F. Chang, MD

Clinical professor
University of California,
San Francisco
San Francisco, California

Kendall Donaldson, MD
Medical director
Bascom Palmer Eye Institute of Plantation
Plantation, Florida



ASCRS launches virtual CME series: ‘20/Happy in 2020: The ASCRS Master Class in Refractive Cataract Surgery’ ASCRS launches virtual CME series: ‘20/Happy in 2020: The ASCRS Master Class in Refractive Cataract
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