UAB optometrist, service line recognized by Pediatric Eye Disease Investigator Group

A UAB optometrist has received an appointment to jointly chair an international collaborative network.

PEDIGjoomlaKatherine Weise, O.D., MBA, FAAOThe University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Optometry’s Pediatric Optometry Service, in partnership with the UAB Department of Ophthalmology, and a pediatric optometrist have been recognized by the Pediatric Eye Disease Investigator Group (PEDIG), a collaborative network supported by the National Eye Institute and dedicated to facilitating multi-institutional clinical research in eye disorders that affect children.

Katherine Weise, O.D., MBA, FAAO, professor and optometrist with UAB Eye Care, has been designated vice chair of PEDIG. Weise will be working with four other optometrists and ophthalmologists from the Mayo Clinic, Ketchum University, Vanderbilt University and Johns Hopkins University to lead the NIH-funded network.

Additionally, UAB’s research team of pediatric optometrists and ophthalmologists has been named PEDIG site of the year. The honor recognizes the group for their impressive number of recruited subjects and dedication to quality for clinical trials related to conditions such as lazy eye, eye turns and myopia.

“To be vice chair of such an important research-driven collaborative partnership is a huge honor, and it’s amazing that our pediatric eye care group here at UAB has been recognized as well,” Weise said. “I am so excited to see how I can support PEDIG in my appointment, and how UAB can continue to further support pediatric research and eye care.”

More than 100 sites and 300 pediatric ophthalmologists and optometrists in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom participate in the PEDIG network. In 2017, UAB was nationally recognized by PEDIG as the ninth-highest in recruitment since PEDIG’s inception in 1997. UAB eye doctors have also assisted PEDIG in publishing more than 100 research articles.

“It’s great to have these distinctions for our clinic and research team,” Weise said. “Being able to steer PEDIG’s research on a national scale helps children both around the world and in our local clinics at UAB. I’m proud that UAB can lead the way.”