The Poona Ophthalmological Society is one of the oldest and largest societies of practicing ophthalmologists and students in a city. It was founded in 1949-50 and the founding fathers were Drs. DG Patwardhan, VD Sathe, MG Bhide, Limaye, BG Desai and LS Bhave, amongst others. From a small group, it has now grown and is about 400 strong. The constitution which was framed at that time has evolved with time incorporating all changes of the modern world, while keeping the basic tenets the same and the essential spirit alive.
It has played host to many conferences. The 42nd Annual conference of the All India Ophthalmological Society was held in 1983 at the Alpabachat Bhavan when Dr. AD Patwardhan was President of the Poona Ophthalmological Society. Annual conferences of the Maharashtra Ophthalmological Society have been held in 1986, 1994 and 2001.
In 1997-98, when Dr. M. B. Jhamwar was President, POSTER, the in-house publication was launched. The inaugural issue was released by Dr. Sota. Dr. Subhash Bijlani was the Founder-Editor and Col. RP Gupta and Dr. Neelima Beke, the co-editors. That year with Dr. Mandar Paranjpe as editor, the POSTER was launched as a Video journal. In 2008-09, under the Presidentship of Dr. Subhash Bijlani, the 1st Annual Conference of the Poona Ophthalmological Society was held with the National Institute of Ophthalmology, H. V. Desai Eye Hospital and Deenanath Mangeshkar Hospital’s Eye Department as co-hosts. This is now a regular annual feature. In 2008-09, the POS acquired its permanent office premises in the new IMA building. The search started and the booking was done in 2003, when Dr. NR Shah was president.
Our members have achieved great distinctions in academic and organizational fields. Drs. LN Deshmukh (1983-84), SM Sathe (87-88), AD Patwardhan (93-94), Sudhir Kale (95-96), SB Kelkar (2000-01), MB Jhamwar (02-03) and Col. Madan Deshpande (06-07) have been Presidents of Maharashtra Ophthalmological Society. Dr. AS Labhsetwar became Dean, B J Medical College, Pune. Maj. Gen. DP Vats is the M. G. (Medical) Southern Command, the highest rank and post occupied by any POS member in the armed forces. Members have also been invited as faculty in many national and international fora.
Awards have been instituted and are given during the AGM of the POS every year: 3 for clinical meetings, the Sahebram-Satyawati Madan Award for Community Ophthalmology, Prof. Bhatwadekar award for the best DNB student.
Awards have been instituted and are given during the annual conference of POS every year: Dr. M. B. Jhanwar Netraseva award for community service, POS lifetime achievement award, POS Mrs. Shubhada Kulkarni Award for Quiz winner, POS Dr. Asha Kulkarni award, POS Best POSTER Award, POS Best Video Award.