Our The Ophthalmologist Power List 2020 series continues with an interview with Abhay Raghukant Vasavada, founder and director of Raghudeep Eye Hospital, Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India, and Iladevi Cataract & IOL Research Centre, Memnagar, Ahmedabad, India. In this interview, he speaks about what motivates him, the most rewarding aspects of his career and his views on the future of ophthalmology.
Q: What motivated you to become an ophthalmologist?
The seeds for becoming an ophthalmologist were sowed in my childhood. My father was an ophthalmologist and, as a child, I saw him selflessly dedicate himself to the service of his patients. At the same time, he was always eager to learn about and try out new strategies to help them. His philanthropic mindset, and the gratification he got from his grateful patients influenced me to take up ophthalmology.
Q: What has been the most rewarding part of your career so far?
It would be difficult to name a particular event, but two things in particular have been my biggest rewards during this journey of mine. The first being the smile and satisfaction I see on the faces of my patients, particularly the parents of the infants and children I treat. The second is the joy I derive when the fellows and doctors I trained do so well in their professional lives.
Q: What developments are you most excited to hear about in 2020–2021?
For the year 2020–2021, we all acknowledge that these have been unusual times. So, unlike every year, this year my hope and prayer is that all of us, across the globe, are healthy and safe. Once we have overcome the coronavirus crisis, I am excited to see newer developments in presbyopia intraocular lens (IOL) technology, particularly with the newer accommodative and extended depth of focus IOL technology. Above all, let’s all be healthy, safe and learn to be grateful for all the joys in our lives for now!
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Published: 9 June 2020
Abhay Raghukant Vasavada is the founder and director of Raghudeep Eye Hospital (REH), Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India, and Iladevi Cataract & IOL Research Centre, Memnagar, Ahmedabad, India. He has been instrumental in establishing phacoemulsification as a standard of care throughout the world. Along with the REH team, he has developed several techniques and has made important contributions to the understanding and practice of adult and paediatric cataract surgery.
His contribution to ophthalmology has been recognised worldwide. Some of the most prestigious awards he has received include the Binkhorst Gold Medal in 2011 by the American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery, the Arthur Lim Oration from the Asia-Pacific Association of Cataract and Refractive Surgeons, the National Best Researcher Award and an honorary doctorate from the University of Hungary. To his credit, he has more than 190 publications and has trained 150 national and 50 international ophthalmologists.