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ABOUT THE SAOA

The SA Optometric Association is a Professional Association registered as a Non-Profit Company (NPC) representing optometrists and dispensing opticians in South Africa. Membership of the SAOA encompasses all forms of practice modalities in the private sector including independent practice, group practice and franchise models, as well as optometrists employed in the public sector, academia, and industry.

The main objective of the Association is to promote and protect the collective interests of its’ membership in good standing, and in so doing, promote the interests of the profession generally as well as those of the public.

SAOA IN A NUTSHELL

Our History

On 31st March 1924, in the Boardroom of the Scientific and Technical Club in Johannesburg, thirteen opticians gathered to witness the birth of what was known as the South African Optical Association , now known as the South African Optometric Association. Some of the founders chose to resign within the few months of the birth of the SAOA, leaving behind nine original founders.

Having negotiated a number of challenges and hurdles at the time, the SAOA Constitution was amended on 1 December 1924 and disseminated to all members. In the same year, the SAOA celebrated its first annual dinner with 40 members present. The following year , attendance at the annual dinner grew to 55 members.

In 1926 ,the first gathering of members took place for what is known today as a Continuing Professional Development (CPD) event, to listen to a lecture on ‘glass’ ; in 1928 the Association applied to become affiliated to the Institute of Ophthalmic Optics in London.

Since its inception in 1924, the SAOA has undergone significant transformation, representing the majority of practicing optometrists in South Africa and boasts an impressive list of achievements.

The SAOA looks forward to celebrating its centennial anniversary in 2024.

About Us

The SA Optometric Association is a Professional Association registered as a Non-Profit Company (NPC) representing optometrists and dispensing opticians in South Africa. Membership of the SAOA encompasses all forms of practice modalities in the private sector including independent practice, group practice and franchise models, as well as optometrists employed in the public sector, academia, and industry.

The main objective of the Association is to promote and protect the collective interests of its membership in good standing, and in so doing, promote the interests of the professions, generally, as well as the public.

Our Vision

The SAOA assumes the role of the custodian of the optometric professions ,which addresses the interests and needs of members by way of advocacy programmes, professional development, the promotion of high ethical standards and support of its membership.

The Vision of the SAOA is to be acknowledged as the recognised voice and custodian of the optometric professions, by all relevant stakeholders and at all levels.

Our Driving Force

SAOA Driving Force: The Professions of Optometry and Dispensing Opticianry

The ‘Driving Force’ of SAOA represents the strategic heartbeat of the organisation and answers the question of ‘what makes the SAOA tick?’ The driving force is the single- minded focal point of the organisation.

Competencies

To realise its vision, it is important for the SAOA to identify key capabilities or skills that need to be cultivated to levels of proficiency to a greater extent than any other, i.e. to a point of excellence.

The competencies to be established for SAOA, regarded as success factors, are summarised as below.

  • Industry Knowledge
  • Leadership
  • Mentorship and Transfer of Skills
  • Advocacy
    • Negotiation skills
    • Inter-personal skills
  • Efficient/Effective Administration
    • Information Technology
    • Database management
    • Financial Management

Deliverables

The deliverables of SAOA represent the menu of services and responsibilities in accordance with its mandate. These deliverables are categorised as follows:

Advocacy programmes – represent rights to practice and lobby across spectrum of practice modalities and environments

  • Stakeholder engagement
  • CPD provision/facilitation
    • Conferences, seminars, and symposia
  • Ethics related advice, assistance
  • ‘Find an Optometrist’ –facility on web
  • Information, news and views
  • Marketing: Profession + Association
    • Public awareness
    • Media relations
    • ‘Feet through the door’ initiatives
  • Practice management
  • Tariff codes
  • Indemnity Insurance

SAOA Market Scope

The Market Scope identifies the segments of the total optometry environment considered important from the SAOA perspective and defines the scope of SAOA operations and involvement.

SAOA operates within the total sphere where there is potential impact or effect on optometrists which includes:

  • Academia
  • Industry
  • Private sector
  • Public Sector
  • General public

TEAM

DIRECTORS

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Nivien Subramany

President

 

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Sandy Govender

Vice President

 

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Enrique Nzula

Finance Director

 

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Ntombi Zitha

Public Health

 

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Martelie Burger

Private Practice

 

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Nabeela Hasrod

Educational and Clinical Director

 

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Brendan Floyd

Special Projects portfolio

 

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STAFF

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Harry Rosen

CEO

 

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Michelle Naidoo

Operations Officer

 

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Thivasha Reddy

Marketing / Membership Manager

 

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Noko Thema

Marketing Administrator

 

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Naledi Morobi

Membership

Administrator

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Mildred Ubombo

Finance Administrator

 

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Ntombi Maserumule

Private Practice

Administrator

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REGIONAL REPRESENTATIVES

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Pearl Dudu Zikiza

Eastern Cape

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Quinton Hinrichsen

Gauteng

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Vhutshilo Magoro

Limpopo

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Moses Mbombi

Mpumalanga

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Yanga Dumalisile

Gauteng

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Sifiso Gwala

KwaZulu Natal

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Jolindi Fourie

Mpumalanga

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Caroline Berry

Western Cape

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Tshepo Malatji

Limpopo

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Mophosho Lehulere

Free State

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Sandy Govender

Western Cape

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Bernadine Nugent

Northern Cape

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COMMITTEES

AWARDS

MARNA PIETERSE

CHRIS EKSTEEN

ZENA JACBSON

TUWANI RASENGANE

EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE (EXC0)

NIVIEN SUBRAMANY

ENRIQUE NZULA

SANDY GOVENDER

HARRY ROSEN

CODING – SUB COMMITTEE OF PRIVATE PRACTICE

MARNA PIETERSE/ MARTELIE BURGER: CO-CHAIRS

NIVIEN SUBRAMANY

PETER BRAUER

AUDIENCE MALULEKE

JEANNE WENTZEL

RONEL DUCCI

JOHN STEIN

THIVASHA REDDY

HARRY ROSEN (EX OFFICIO)

EDUCATION AND CLINICAL STANDARDS

NABEELA HASROD

CASANDRA SEETHAL

TUWANI RASENGANE

SOLANI MATHEBULA

RAYMOND MABASO

PATRACK MAWILA

HARRY ROSEN (EX OFFICIO)

ETHICS, TRANSFORMATION AND SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT

HARRY ROSEN

MARIETJIE RICHTER

FINANCE

ENRIQUE NZULA

SIMARCA

MILDRED UBOMBO

JOY STEWART

THIVASHA REDDY

HARRY ROSEN (EX OFFICIO)

MARKETING

SANDY GOVENDER

CHRIS EKSTEEN

MAGORO

NOKO THEMA

MICHELLE NAIDOO

THIVASHA REDDY

HARRY ROSEN

PRIVATE PRACTICE

MARTELIE BURGER (CHAIR)

DOLLARS BOLOKA

SANDY GOVENDER

ENRIQUE NZULA

SANDRA WHITE

THIVASHA REDDY

HARRY ROSEN (EX OFFICIO)

PUBLIC HEALTH

NTOMBI ZITHA

BIGNOCIA MASINGE

HASEENA MAJID

SANDY GOVENDER (MARKETING)

THIVASHA REDDY

HARRY ROSEN (EX OFFICIO)

SPECIAL PROJECTS

BRENDAN FLOYD

MARNA PIETERSE

HARRY ROSEN

STRATEGY AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

HARRY ROSEN

DOLLARS BOLOKA

NIVIEN SUBRAMANY

OMBUDSMAN

BRIAN SNEAG

OMBUDSMAN

RAYMOND MABASO

Ombudsman

ALLAN WISE

Deputy Ombudsman

MEMBERSHIP

BENEFITS

APPLY FOR MEMBERSHIP

FEES STRUCTURE

EYE CARE STAKEHOLDERS

LINKS TO GROUPS IN SPECIAL INTEREST

OPTOMETRY PATRON

EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTIONS