World Ophthalmology Congress® (WOC) of the International Council of Ophthalmology
The ICO WOC is held in a different region every two years and provides an international audience of ophthalmologists with:
The ICO WOC is the longest continuous international medical meeting, first held in 1857. Revenues from the World Ophthalmology Congress® support a wide range of ICO initiatives and programs.
WOC2022 Virtual will be held on 9-12 September 2022 hosted by the Chinese Ophthalmological Society and in collaboration with the Asia-Pacific Academy of Ophthalmology.
On 26–29 June 2020, the International Council of Ophthalmology with its Member Societies and delegates from around the world made history with the first ever online global gathering in ophthalmology. Just three months before the physical 37th World Ophthalmology Congress, WOC2020® was to take place in Cape Town, hosted by the Ophthalmology Society of South Africa (OSSA), and in collaboration with the Middle East Africa Council of Ophthalmology (MEACO), the COVID-19 outbreak quickly grew to an unprecedented pandemic. While the ICO was committed to providing the highest level of education to our global community, we recognized that nothing was more important than the health and safety of our colleagues and our communities. The ICO, in collaboration with MEACO, quickly responded with a ground-breaking state-of-the-art virtual conference centre to create a safe space for our delegates to access the WOC2020 Virtual® scientific program, preserving the scientific contributions from the region. The response and support were tremendous, with more than 7,000 participants from 157 countries who made WOC2020 Virtual® happen. WOC2020 Virtual® showcased a world-class scientific program with presentations and symposia on the latest research from top experts in 24 subspecialties. In addition, there were interactive networking opportunities, live streaming sessions and wet labs, industry symposia, and three virtual exhibition halls where attendees could meet with the ICO’s committed industries and partner organizations.
This innovative congress was an opportunity for the global ophthalmology community to overcome the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic and come together to continue advancing our field. The virtual experience made the Congress more accessible than ever before, with an opportunity to collaborate and share the latest advancements in eye care. Access to the whole content of the congress was extended for an additional three months. Participants from around the world were able to take part in these unique and dynamic learning opportunities from the safety of their own homes and offices. From the bottom of our hearts, the ICO would like to say thank you to all of the presenters, delegates, volunteers and staff who overcame all odds and helped to make WOC2020 Virtual® such an incredible success.