Hyderabad: Dr Santosh G Honavar, a Hyderabad-based Ophthalmic Plastic Surgeon and Ocular Oncologist, the Director, Medical Services of Centre for Sight Eye Hospitals and the Editor of Indian Journal of Ophthalmology has achieved the unique distinction of being the first Indian Ophthalmologist to receive the Life Achievement Honor Award, the highest award of the American Academy of Ophthalmology conferred to its members.
Dr Santosh G Honavar, a Hyderabad-based Ophthalmic Plastic Surgeon and Ocular Oncologist, the Director, Medical Services of Centre for Sight Eye Hospitals and the Editor of Indian Journal of Ophthalmology has achieved the unique distinction of being the first Indian Ophthalmologist to receive the Life Achievement Honor Award, the highest award of the American Academy of Ophthalmology conferred to its members.
American Academy of Ophthalmology is the world’s largest association of eye specialists. The mission of the American Academy of Ophthalmology is to protect sight and empower lives. Founded in 1896 and headquartered in San Francisco, USA, American Academy of Ophthalmology has 32,000 professional members that include about 90 percent of practicing ophthalmologists in USA.
Dr Santosh G. Honavar was chosen for its highest award to recognize “contributions to the Academy, its scientific and educational programs, and to the advancement of ophthalmology.” In a citation announcing the award, the American Academy of Ophthalmology states that “Dr Honavar’s contributions have been instrumental in supporting the Academy’s mission to protect sight and empower lives.” The Award was formally presented Dr Honavar at the Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Ophthalmology held in San Francisco recently.
Dr Honavar is a nationally and internationally acclaimed for his work in the field of ophthalmic plastic surgery and ocular oncology. He was previously awarded one of the highest recognitions in Indian Science, the Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Award by the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, Government of India for his path-breaking research on the childhood eye cancer Retinoblastoma, Jerry Shields Award by the Asia Pacific Academy of Ophthalmology and most recently the Peter Rogers Oration by the Australian and New Zealand Society of Ophthalmic Plastic Surgeons.
Dr Honavar was trained at Bangalore Medical College, Bangalore; Dr Rajendra Prasad Centre for Ophthalmic Sciences, AIIMS, New Delhi and Wills Eye Hospital, Philadelphia, USA. He is also a fellow of the American College of Surgeons.
Formerly the Director of the Department of Ophthalmic Plastic Surgery and Ocular Oncology, Director of Ophthalmology Residency Program and Associate Director of LV Prasad Eye Institute, Hyderabad, Dr Honavar currently heads the Department of Ophthalmic Plastic Surgery and Ocular Oncology and National Retinoblastoma Foundation at Centre for Sight, Hyderabad and leads the Medical Services team and the educational wing – CFS Education. Centre for Sight is the leading network of 54 tertiary care eye hospitals in India and is supported by the Mahindra Group.
Dr Honavar is also the Chief Editor of the Indian Journal of Ophthalmology, which is a 66-years-old flagship monthly professional medical journal of the All India Ophthalmological Society. The journal publishes articles on ophthalmology and vision science. Dr Honavar has been its editor for 3 years.
Eye cancers have been the principal focus of Dr Honavar and he is known to have contributed to the understanding and treatment of tumors affecting the eyelid, ocular surface, intraocular structures and orbit. Dr Honavar’s overall research contributions have had very significant impact on the diagnosis and management of retinoblastoma and its outcome. Dr Honavar has extensively published in peer reviewed journals with significant impact (over 250 manuscripts with a powerful H-index of 43) and has written several book chapters, while being a reviewer for all the major journals in ophthalmology and oncology.
Dr Honavar leads the International Council of Ophthalmology oculoplasty fellowship curriculum development committee and the oculoplasty section of the residency curriculum development committee. He is also on the ICO panel for ICD-11 and AJCC-8 committee. He recently completed his term as the President of the Asia Pacific Society of Ocular Oncology and Pathology. He is currently the Scientific Program Coordinator of the Oculoplastics Association of India, and member of the Oculoplasty Program Committee of the American Academy of Ophthalmology. Dr Honavar runs a very active fellowship program in Ophthalmic Plastic Surgery and Ocular Oncology and has trained over 70 national and international fellows. He also runs the ICO international retinoblastoma fellowship, training young ocular oncologists from Asia and Africa.
Some of the major awards and honors to his credit include Col Rangachari Gold Medal by the AIOS, 1992; Zeigler International Fellowship by the Orbis International, New York, USA, 1999; Young Scientist Award by the Indian Society of Oncology, 2000; Best of Show Award by the American Academy of Ophthalmology, 2002 and 2006; Achievement Award by the American Academy of Ophthalmology, 2002; Dr Siva Reddy International Award by the AIOS, 2007; Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Award by the Government of India, 2010; Prof MA Matin Award by the Bangladesh Academy of Ophthalmology, 2013; APAO Distinguished Service Award 2018; and Key Note Oration at the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Ophthalmologists meeting 2019.