Dr Priya Morjaria
BSc Optometry FCOptom MSc PhD
of International Eye Health / Public Health Optometrist
Priya trained as an Optometrist from City University and completed the pre-registration year to become a member of the College of Optometrists (UK). She practiced community and hospital optometry for 3 years, before purusing her interest in public health full-time.
She continues to practice Clinical Optometry in a community and hospital setting. She was also a clinic supervisor for final year students at the refraction clinics at City University.
Her interest in Public Health has given her the opportunity to work with several eye care INGOs in low and middle income settings. She completed the MSc in Public Health for Eye Care at LSHTM and joined the International Centre for Eye Health (ICEH) as a researcher. Followed by a PhD titled 'Evidence to improve the Efficiency and Effectiveness of School Eye Health Programmes'.
In 2017 she was recognised by the World Council of Optometry and awarded the Paul Berman Young Leader Award. More recently, in 2020 she was made a Fellow of the European Academy of Optometry and Optics and was also recently admitted as a Liveryman to the Worshipful Company of Spectacle Makers.
Priya is the co-chair for the School Eye Health Working Group at the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness and the Vice Chair for the Public Health Committee at the World Council of Optometry.
She teaches on the MSc Public Health for Eye Care. She teaches on three modules and is also a module organiser for 'Skills for field research'.
Her teaching topics include:-
- Epidemiology and management of refractive errors including pressbyopia
- Impact of refractive errors
- Human resources for refractive errors
- Planning of school eye health programmes
- Data driven decisions in programmes
To date she has supervisied 13 MSc students for their thesis with an interest in refractive errors, low vision services, delivery of school eye health programmes and evidence based decisions in delivery of eye health programmes.
She has completed her PhD at LSHTM working under the supervision of Professor Clare Gilbert. Her PhD research focuses on improving the efficiency of school programs for uncorrected refractive error. Her regional focus wass India, where she undertook two randomized clinical trials to obtain evidence on cost effectiveness, screening levels, prescribing of spectacle and health education; all with the outcome of increasing spectacle wear in children. Her first trial addresses spectacle wearing rates in children randomized to ready-made spectacles or custom-made spectacles. And her second trial uses the innovative mobile phone application 'Peek' to screen children in schools and provide health education to parents, teachers and children to change the negative attitude towards wearing spectacles. This was a complex health intervention.
She has a breadth of experience in eye research in a number of countries including Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Nepal, Rwanda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Currerntly she also works as the Head of Global Programme Design at Peek Vision. This role allows her to combine her research skills to provide evidence based programme decisions with an iterative methodology.
She has also recently been awarded her second USAID Child Blindness Program grant to develop a rapid planning tool for school eye health programmes, called the School Eye Health Rapid Assessment (SEHRA) tool. This is the first of its kind in the area and is being developed with consensus from different stakeholders in the field.