Dr Geoffrey Cohn OAM M.B., B.Ch., F.R.A.N.Z.C.O., F.R.A.C.S.
Clinical Senior Lecturer, UNSW, Ophthalmic surgeon, diseases of the eye, cornea, cataract surgery, general ophthalmology, pterygium, ocular pain
Dr Geoffrey Cohn OAM graduated with as Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery from the University of the Witwatersrand in South Africa. Following a professorial internship, he worked in a “mission hospital” in the Kalahari Desert, where he came to appreciate the scale of eye problems, their devastating impact in the individual, the family and the community and that there were no resources to call upon.
Training in Australia, he was elected as a Fellow to the Royal Australian College of Ophthalmologists (RANZCO) and to the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons. On completion of this specialisation, Dr. Cohn returned to Africa to work as a community ophthalmologist, extending the skills to teams of trainees.
After some years, he returned to Australia to an appointment at the University of New South Wales to teach. He retains a passionate interest in foreign aid projects in developing countries . Dr Cohn was chairman of the Overseas Aid Committee of the Royal Australia and New Zealand College of Ophthalmologists, having held this position within the College from 2002 -2013. He has also been a lecturer in the University of NSW, School of Medicine, since 1985 and has a keen interest in ocular pain, dry eye conditions and corneal problems.
In the last 20 years Dr Cohn’s international projects have seen him establish teaching programmes in Myanmar (formerly Burma), India, Indonesia and Cambodia that aim to empower local ophthalmologists and their communities. Australian expertise augments the knowledge and expertise of the resident staff, and equipment is provided to ensure that the centres are able to function optimally.
In 2010 Dr Cohn was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia for service to ophthalmology, and for overseas aid programs fostering improved eye-health services.
Dr. Cohn enjoys sideline careers in music and writing.