Subscribe to Newsletter
Business & Profession Comprehensive, Professional Development, Practice Management

The Hue of Hope

Every year, Pantone – the company known for its standardized color system and eponymous swatches – chooses a Color of the Year. In 2019, Living Coral cheerfully symbolized “our innate desire for playful expression.” Classic Blue came in 2020, “highlighting our need for a dependable and stable foundation on which to build as we cross the threshold into a new era” (foreshadowing). But 2021 was given a gift: not one, but two colors; Illuminating, “a bright and cheerful yellow, sparkling with vivacity” and Ultimate Gray, a “solid and dependable” shade.

“Practical and rock solid but at the same time warming and optimistic, this is a color combination that gives us resilience and hope. We need to feel encouraged and uplifted: this is essential to the human spirit,” explained Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute (1).

The focus is on doing your best with what you have.

Though our content is not dependent on the whims of Pantone’s color forecasting team (believe it or not), we fully endorse the message of practical positivity. After a year of relentless challenges – and with more on the horizon – the focus is on doing your best with what you have. Nowhere is this more apparent than Change the Things You Can  by Lauren Hock, a practical guide to dealing with patient-initiated verbal harassment – principles that can be applied to any form of identity-based discrimination.

In an ideal world, no ophthalmologist would face discrimination in the workplace but we do not live in an ideal world. A national survey of mostly female ophthalmologists and ophthalmology trainees showed that 59 percent had experienced sexual harassment during their careers, most commonly during training (2). Hock is ultimately hopeful this will change, but she knows it won’t happen overnight; until then, she wants residents to be equipped with the necessary tools to handle discriminatory behavior on their own. Practical positivity.

Ashiyana Nariani, Assistant Professor in the Department of Ophthalmology at King Edward Memorial Hospital and Seth G.S. Medical College, Mumbai, India shares the same philosophy in this issue's Sitting Down With. Nariani is raising funds to build a refractive surgery suite for India’s poorest, most underserved population. “It is a multimillion-dollar endeavor, so it might not seem realistic, but we can achieve it if we just keep putting one foot in front of the other. I’ve started noticing that, when there is a specific, concrete need, people come forward and help” she says.

Perhaps this is how we should all navigate the next few months – by putting one foot in front of the other and hoping that all will come well in the end.

Receive content, products, events as well as relevant industry updates from The Ophthalmologist and its sponsors.

When you click “Subscribe” we will email you a link, which you must click to verify the email address above and activate your subscription. If you do not receive this email, please contact us at [email protected].
If you wish to unsubscribe, you can update your preferences at any point.

  1. Pantone, “Color of the Year” (2020). Available at:
  2. N Fnais et al., “Harassment and discrimination in medical training: a systematic review and meta-analysis,” Acad Med, 89, 817 (2014). PMID: 24667512.
About the Author
Phoebe Harkin

Associate Editor of The Ophthalmologist

I’ve always loved telling stories. So much so, I decided to make a job of it. I finished a Masters in Magazine Journalism and spent three years working as a creative copywriter before itchy feet sent me (back)packing. It took seven months and 13 countries, but I’m now happily settled on The Ophthalmologist, where I’m busy getting stuck into all things eyeballs.

Register to The Ophthalmologist

Register to access our FREE online portfolio, request the magazine in print and manage your preferences.

You will benefit from:
  • Unlimited access to ALL articles
  • News, interviews & opinions from leading industry experts
  • Receive print (and PDF) copies of The Ophthalmologist magazine



The Ophthalmologist website is intended solely for the eyes of healthcare professionals. Please confirm below: