Clare E. Gilbert, MB, ChB, FRCOphth, MD, MSc
Dr. Clare Gilbert
Professor Clare E. Gilbert qualified in Medicine at Bristol University and went straight into ophthalmology, partly because she knew that blindness was relatively common in developing countries and that ophthalmology was a transferable skill.
Dr. Gilbert joined the International Centre for Eye Health (ICEH) in 1990, under the leadership of Professors Gordon Johnson and Allen Foster (AAO International Blindness Prevention Award in 2005) with a remit to study the epidemiology of blindness in children.
Retinopathy of Prematurity: Data that Dr. Gilbert
and colleagues collected showed that a "third epidemic" of blindness due to ROP is occurring in the middle income countries of Latin America and Eastern Europe, and in cities in the emerging economies in Asia.
As a result of operational research and multiple workshops across Latin America and in other regions, programs for ROP are now in place in the majority of countries in Latin America and policies which make ROP screening mandatory are also in place in some countries.
Programs and policies are also developing in India, China and in some Eastern European countries.
Other Areas of Research: Dr. Gilbert's
other research in relation to children include a nationwide study of congenital eye anomalies in the United Kingdom; evaluation of low vision services for children in Asia; a trial of different interventions to promote spectacle wearing among secondary school children in Tanzania; and a PhD student from Malawi is comparing two different approaches to detecting children in the community who need eye care services.
At ICEH, Dr. Gilbert
has also played a major role in two large national surveys of blindness and visual impairment among adults in Pakistan and Nigeria.
Both have provided a wealth of data for planning, advocacy and policy.
is currently supervising a PhD student who is exploring eye disease in an HIV cohort in South Africa, and two further Nigerian PhD students are investigating different aspects of primary open angle glaucoma in adults in Nigeria.
As a member of staff at ICEH, she teaches Masters program and contributes to the production of the Community Eye Health Journal, which now has a circulation of 34,000 published four times time a year in five languages to over 180 countries.
Being an advisor to Sightsavers keeps her rooted in the realities of eye care delivery in developing countries and the challenges faced by service providers and communities.
received the Honorary Fellow West African College of Surgeons Award
in 2004, the Outstanding Contribution Award from the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness
in 2001, the Pfizer Visiting Professor Award in 2010 and the International Blindness Prevention Award from the American Academy of Ophthalmology