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The program is designed with an emphasis on comprehensive ophthalmology education with rotations in the subspecialties of ophthalmology.

Residents in their first year in ophthalmology have as their primary duties the supervision of the walk-in or emergency clinic, daily refractions, and complete ophthalmic examinations. The residents assist in the operating room 1 ½ days/week and perform a variety of ocular procedures as the primary surgeon. These residents complete 12 months clinical work including rotations in pediatric ophthalmology and strabismus as well as neuro-ophthalmology.

Residents in their second year in ophthalmology have a rotation away from the home institution at the Lancaster Basic Science Course held at Colby College in Maine for six weeks in the summer between their first and second years. They also have a rotation at the Wills Eye Hospital in ophthalmic pathology, which lasts two months for each resident in the spring of their second year as well as rotations in retina, glaucoma, neuro-ophthalmology, pediatric ophthalmology and low vision and contact lens.

During the third year, residents are responsible for inpatient systemic disease consultations and the management of more complex ophthalmic cases under appropriate attending supervision. The residents perform the full range of intraocular surgery and laser surgery and are responsible for pre-, intra- and post-operative care under appropriate attending supervision. Rotations in the third year include retina, oculoplastics and neuro-ophthalmology. Each third-year ophthalmology resident acts as chief resident for a six-month period assisting the residency director in the administrative duties of the residency and organizing the on-call schedule, grand rounds, morbidity and mortality conferences, pathology conferences and guest lectures.

On call
Primary call responsibility is distributed among the six residents. In general the first and second years divide weeknight call evenly. While the third-year resident’s act as backup call for the first year residents. The third year residents have the opportunity to participate in the majority of surgical cases in their role as backup. During the time when either when either first or second year residents are away on rotation or at courses, accommodations to share call are made. From January until April, while one second year is away for the pathology rotation, the call is divided among the remaining residents.

Call during the week starts at 5 p.m. and ends the following morning at 7 a.m. There is always an attending ophthalmologist on call as backup for surgical cases and assistance with complicated patients.

First- and second-year residents will take call approximately 33-34 days every six months out of the year and weekend call nine times a year. Third-year residents will take approximately 25-26 call days every six months and weekend call nine times a year.