Héctor C. Santiago, O.D., PhD

Full Professor/ Director of Research

TEACHING/RESEARCH INTERESTS

Teaching Interests

  • Cultural Competence
  • Visual Perception
  • Pediatric Optometry

Research Interests

  • Refractive, visual and perceptual characteristics of children and special populations
  • International public health
  • International optometric education

EDUCATION

  • O.D. New England College of Optometry (1984)
  • Ph.D. – Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at Houston, University of Texas (1982)
  • M.S. – Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at Houston University of Texas at Houston (1977)
  • B.S. – University of Puerto Rico at Mayaguez (1970)

RECENT COURSES TAUGHT/CLINICAL INSTRUCTION

  • Cultural Competence I
  • Cultural Competence II
  • Vision Research
  • Perception of Light, Form, and Color
  • Vision Screening
  • Vision Screening and Clerkship
  • Patient Care 1-3

PUBLICATIONS, POSTERS, AND PRESENTATIONS

Refereed Publications

  • Santiago H. C. Visual mapping to enhance learning and critical thinking skills. Journal of Optometric Education, 2011; 36(3): 125-139.
  • Santiago H. C. Optometrists far the 21st Century. Journal of Optometric Education, Volume 32, Number 1 (Fall 2006).
  • Santiago H. C. Optometrists for the 21st Century. The Advisor, Volume 26, No. 4, December 2006.
  • Santiago H. C., Matos I. Visual recognition memory in specific learning-disabled children. J Am Optom Assoc 1994; 65: 690-700.
  • Santiago, H. C. The recruitment and retention of disadvantaged and underrepresented groups in optometry. J Am Optom Assoc 1992; 63: 815-818.
  • Santiago, H. C. Visual Recognition Memory: can pictures be rehearsed? Proceedings of the 1986 Symposium on Theoretical and Clinical Optometry. Northeastern State University College of Optometry, Tahlequah, Oklahoma. (1986).
  • Wright, A. A. Santiago H. C., Sands S. F, Kendrick, DF and Cook R. G. Memory Processing of Serial list of Pigeons, Monkeys, and People. Science 1985; 229: 287-289.
  • Wright A. A., Santiago H. C., Sands S. F. Monkey memory: same/ different concept learning, serial probe acquisition, and probe delay effects. J Exp Psycbol Anim Behav Process 1985; 10: 513-29.
  • Sands, S. F, Urcuioli, P. J., Wright A. A., and Santiago, H. C. Serial Position effects and Rehearsal in Primate Visual Memory. In: H. L. Roitblat, T. G. Bever and H. S. Terrace (Eds) Animal Cognition. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Hillsdale, N. J. (1984).
  • Wright, A. A. Santiago H. C., Pigeon and Monkey serial pro be recognition: acquisition strategies and serial position effects. In: H. L. Roitblat, T. G. Bever and H. S. Terrace (Eds) Animal Cognition, Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Hillsdale, N. J. (1984).
  • Santiago H. C., Wright A. A. Pigeon memory: same/ different concept learning, serial probe recognition acquisition, and probe delay effects on the serial-position function. J Exp Psychol Anim Behav Process 1984; 10:498-512.
  • Santiago H. C., Wright A. A. Brightness contrast: a reinterpretation of compound cue and combined cue experiments with pigeons. J Exp Anim Behav 1980; 33: 87-99.
  • Santiago, H.C. and Wright, AA. Brightness contrast as a configural dimension far discriminations in pigeons. Paper presented in the Eighteenth Annual Meeting of the Psycbonomic Society. Washington, D. C. (1977).

Refereed Posters and Oral Presentations

  • Santiago H. C. The Opinion of Educational leaders on Opportunities for Collaboration Between US and Latin American Schools and Colleges of Optometry. Accepted poster at the American Academy of Optometry Meeting in San Antonio, Texas (November 9, 2018).
  • Santiago H. C., Suzuki H. Systemic, Ocular and Refractive Conditions in a Clinical Population in the Dominican/ Haitian Border Town of Pedernales. Accepted poster at the American Academy of Optometry Meeting in San Antonio, Texas (November 9, 2018).
  • Santiago H. C, Rullán M., Ortiz K. Refractive error, visual dysfunctions, ocular pathology, obesity and hypertension in the children of Puerto Rico. Oral presentation at the First Congress of Researchers of the Inter American University of Puerto Rico. Barranquitas, Puerto Rico (April 12, 2018).
  • Santiago H. C., Rullán M., Ortiz K., Rivera A., Piña J., Nieves M. Third Year Results: Refractive error, Visual Dysfunctions and Ocular Pathology Study in Children of Puerto Rico. Poster at the American Academy of Optometry Meeting in Chicago, Illinois. (October 13, 2017).
  • Santiago H. C., Rullán M., Ortiz K., Rivera A., Piña .J, Nieves M. Second Year Results of the Prevalence of Refractive Error, Visual Dysfunctions and Ocular Pathologies Study in Children of Puerto Rico. Poster at the American Academy of Optometry Meeting in Anaheim, California. (November 11, 2016).
  • Santiago H. C., Ortiz K., Rullán M., Rivera A., Lamoutte A., Mercado Y., Torres Z., Rodríguez N. Refractive Error, Visual Dysfunctions and Ocular Pathology in Children of Puerto Rico: First Year Results. Poster at the American Academy of Optometry Meeting, New Orleans (October 8, 2015).
  • Santiago H.C., Chu G. The Challenge of Cultural and Linguistic Competence: Hispanic and Asian Patients. Lecture at the American Academy of Optometry, New Orleans (October 10, 2015)
  • Santiago H.C., Ortiz K., Rullán M., Bawja G., Rivera A., Lamoutte A., Mercado Y., Torres Z., Rodriguez N. Proyecto RESC: Prevalencia de Errores Refractivos en los Niños de Puerto Rico. Poster at the First World Congress of Optometry Medellín, Colombia (August 13, 2015).
  • Chu G.Y., Fink B., Leasher J., Santiago, H. C., Stone W., Brubaker C. Evaluation of ASCO’s Cultural Competency Curriculum Guidelines Implementation Workshops. Poster at the American Academy of Optometry, Denver Colorado (November 14, 2014).
  • Santiago H. C., Lu F., Scharre J., Benavides S., Hue J. Global Optometry: China, USA and the Developing World. SUNY Third Annual Career Symposium. New York, NY. (April 6, 2014).
  • Santiago H. C., Pagan D., Rullán M., Ortiz K., Rodríguez N., Ruiz L., De Jesús J. M. Refractive Error Study in Children of Puerto Rico. Poster at the 2013 Annual Meeting of the Puerto Rico Optometric Association (October 2013).
  • Marshall E., Pang Y., Mutha S., Pence P., Fink B., Santiago H. C., Patel P., Jones E. M. ASCO Guidelines for Cultural/y Competent Eye and Vision Care: an adaptation of best practices from the schools, colleges, organizations and associations of the health professions (June 2008).
  • Santiago H. C. The future of optometric education. Presentation at the Optometry 2020 Summit. Dallas, Texas (August 5, 2005).
  • Santiago H. C. Educating and Training Nurses, Teachers and Parents about Primary Eye Care of Children. Presentation at the American Optometric Association Vision 2010 Symposium, Chicago, Illinois (October 2003).  Santiago H. C. Caring of the Hispanic Patient. Ellerbrock lecture at the Annual American Academy of Optometry Meeting, Dallas, Texas (December 2003).
  • Santiago H. C. Educating and Training Nurses, Teachers and Parents about Primary Eye Care of Children. Presentation at the Annual American Academy of Optometry Meeting, Dallas, Texas (December 2003).
  • Santiago H. C. The challenge of diabetes and other diseases in the care of the Hispanic patient. Ellerbrock Lecture at the Annual American Academy Meeting, San Diego, California (December 2002).
  • Santiago H. C. Our Latin Neighbors: The Challenge of Primary Care. Presentation at the American Academy of Optometry Primary Care Symposium, Philadelphia, P A. (December 2001).
  • Santiago H. C. Visual Perceptual and Learning dysfunctions in a population of residents of a drug rehabilitation center. Poster at the 1996 American Academy of Optometry. Orlando, Florida (December 1996).
  • De Jesús J. M., Santiago H. C. Contrast sensitivity as a predictor of glaucoma. Paper presented at the 1995 Meeting of the American Academy of Optometry. New Orleans, LA. (December 1995.)
  • Santiago, H. C. Visual, perceptual and educational dysfunctions in a group of Hispanic residents of a juvenile detention center. Poster presented at the 1995 Meeting of the American Academy of Optometry. New Orleans, LA. (December 1995).
  • Santiago H. C., Cabello I., Vision screening results in a migrant worker population. Poster presented at the 1993 Meeting of the American Academy of Optometry (December 1993).
  • Santiago H. C., Velez M., Lugo E., Natrajan S. Chromatic effects in word recognition in Hispanic children. Poster presented at the 1992 Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Optometry, Orlando, FL (December 1992).
  • Santiago H. C., and Pérez A. M. Test-retest reliability of the Development Eye Movement Test. Paper presented at the American Academy of Optometry. Orlando, FL. (December 13, 1992).
  • Santiago H. C., The recruitment and retention of disadvantaged students and underrepresented groups in optometry. Paper presented at the Georgetown Summit on Optometric Education. Washington (March 1992).
  • Santiago H. C., Visual Recognition memory for eidetic and unknown word in specific learning-disabled children. Poster presented at The Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Optometry. Anaheim, CA. (December 16, 1991).
  • Santiago H. C., Frequency of developmental eye movement subtypes in specific learning-disabled children. Poster presented at the 1991 Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Optometry. Anaheim, California (December 16, 1991).
  • Santiago H. C., Verma S., Berger J. Primary Visual Care in the Migrant Health Center. Paper presented in the 1991 National Conference on Migrant and Seasonal Farm workers. Buffalo, New York (May 1, 1991).
  • Santiago H. C., Validity study of The Spanish Version of the Dyslexia Determination Test. Poster presented at The Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Optometry. Nashville, TN (December 1990).
  • Santiago H. C., Serial pro be visual recognition memory in specific learning-disabled children. Poster presented at The Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Optometry. Nashville, TN (December 1990).

Research Support

  • Lion Clubs International Foundation: $85,500 for the research project Refractive Error and Visual Dysfunctions Study in the Children of Puerto Rico (2014-5).
  • Inter American University of Puerto Rico Research Seed Funds $5,000 for the Project Low-Cost Technologies for the Determination of Refractive Error (August 2013).
  • Inter American University of Puerto Rico Research Seed Funds, $13,000 for the preparatory phase of the Refractive Error Study in Children of Puerto Rico (August 2012).
  • National Eye Institute Community Health Award, $20,000 for Collaborative Work with the Rotary Club of San Juan (2007-9).
  • National Eye Institute Community Health Award, $20,000 (2002-4).
  • Research Institute of the Inter American University. Grant: Serial Probe Recognition Memory in Learning-Disabled Children, 1990-1991 ($4,220).
  • Research Institute of the Inter American University. Grant: Saccadic eye movements and dynamic of visual recognition memory of Specific Learning -Disabled Children, 1991-199 2 ($2,500).
  • CIBA TQM Grant $9,500 (1999).
  • Research Institute of the Inter American University. Grant: Contrast sensitivity as a predictor of glaucoma, 1993- 1994 ($4,000). Collaborator: Dr. José M. De Jesús.
  • Migrant Health Primary Eye Care Grant (1988-93) – Administered through ASCO ($50,000).
  • Investigator on grant MH-35202: Memory processing in a SPR task $87,000 (direct cost), April 1981- March 1984, with Drs. A. A. Wright, S. Sand and P. J. Urcuioli.
  • National Institute of Health Research Training Grant (EY – 07024-07); $56,280 (1976-82).

ACADEMIC AND PROFESSIONAL DISTINCTIONS

  • Diplomate in Public Health, American Academy of Optometry (2018).
  • Elected member of the Puerto Rico Academy of Arts and Sciences (2015).
  • Founding Dean, Midwestern University Arizona College of Optometry (2008-2010).
  • Dean, Inter American University of Puerto Rico School of Optometry (1997-2008).
  • Fellow of the American Academy of Optometry since 2002.

LEADERSHIP POSITIONS

  • Chair, Education Committee Latin American Association of Optometry and Optics (2014 to present).
  • Vice- President Puerto Rico Optometric Association (2004-2006; 2012-2018).
  • Chair, International Optometric Educators Special Interest Group of the Association of Schools and College of Optometry (2014-2016).
  • President, Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry (2006-2007).

COMUNITY SERVICE

  • Director Sightfirst Program Lions 51 C District (2013 to present).
  • Ambassador of Goodwill Medal: International Association of Lions Clubs (2014).
  • President, Exchange Club in San Juan (2002-2003).
  • President Board of Directors Lions Eye Bank (1999-2003).
  • President, Boriquén Baldrich Lions Club (1997-1998).
  • Organized over 20 clinical humanitarian missions where over 15,000 patients have received primary eye care services in Dominican Republic and Panama.

BIOGRAPHY

Dr. Hector Santiago was born in Ponce, Puerto Rico. He obtained his Bachelor’s Degree in Physics and Mathematics (Magna Cum Laude) at the University of Puerto Rico, his Master’s and Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences from the University of Texas Graduate School Of Biomedical Sciences at Houston and his Doctor of Optometry Degree from the New England College of Optometry in Boston.  

Dr. Santiago has been involved in optometric education for 34 years. He was Dean of the Inter American University of Puerto Rico School of Optometry, Founding Dean of Midwestern University Arizona College of Optometry and President of the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry.

Dr. Santiago is the author of over 100 publications, posters, papers and invited lectures. At the international level, he has been an invited lecturer in Spain, Italy, Colombia, Argentina, Venezuela, Ecuador, Dominican Republic, Brazil, Chile, Perú, United States and Mexico. He was Secretary-Treasurer of the Latin American Association of Optometry and Optics (ALDOO), Founding Member of the Latin American Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry and Chair of the International Optometric Educators Special Interest Group of the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry (IOE SIG). As Chair of ALDOO’s Education Committee, he has organized international meetings of Deans and Directors of Latin American Optometry programs in Trinidad Tobago; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Medellín Colombia; Panama City, Panama and Leon, Mexico. He has also been involved in the establishment of the first professional optometry program in Dominican Republic.  

He has organized more than 20 humanitarian clinical missions in Dominican Republic and Panama where more than 15,000 patients have received free eye care, eyeglasses, medications and pterygia surgeries.  He received financial support from the Lions Clubs International Foundation to develop Low Vision Services in Puerto Rico and more recently to conduct the first study of the prevalence of refractive error and visual dysfunctions of the children of Puerto Rico. In this project over 3,000 children across Puerto Rico were examined following a World Health Organization clinical research protocol. He is an active member of the International Association of Lion Clubs for over 20 years including tenures as President of the Puerto Rico Lions Eye Bank, President of the Boriquén-Baldrich Lions Club and Sightfirst Chairman. He was the recipient of the Lions Presidential Award, Lions Presidential Medal and Ambassador of Goodwill, the highest distinction of Lions Clubs International. He is currently a Professor and Director of Research at IAUPR School of Optometry.

Dr. Santiago’s lifetime interests are the development of optometric education throughout the world, cultural competence, pediatric optometry, optometric research, and clinical humanitarian service.  He believes that the active involvement of students with the community they serve promotes the highest level of professionalism and lifetime learning.

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