Ophthalmology Residency Curriculum
Residents in the Department of Ophthalmology rotate through several clinical sites to gain varied experience in general ophthalmology and its many subspecialties: NYC Health + Hospitals/Bellevue, VA NY Harbor Healthcare System, NYC Health + Hospitals/Woodhull, NYU Langone’s Kimmel Pavilion, Hassenfeld Children’s Hospital at NYU Langone, and NYU Langone Eye Center. The combination of city hospital and university hospital settings provides you with a challenging mix of clinical and surgical cases.
Residency Program Overview
As a resident in our program, you have increasing responsibility as you gain knowledge and experience in each rotation. Teamwork among all the classes is a hallmark of our program. All residents function as a tight unit and remain onsite until all patients have been seen. Residents can also easily interchange their shifts as needed.
Postgraduate Year 1
In 2021, our residency program adopted an integrated postgraduate year one (PGY-1). Medical school candidates who applied in the 2021 SF Match will start as PGY-1 residents at NYU Grossman School of Medicine in July 2022. Our PGY-1 year includes three months of ophthalmology, seven months of internal medicine, one month of emergency medicine, and one month of neurology.
Postgraduate Year 2
Your second year of residency includes outpatient clinic visits, inpatient hospital consultation, and performance of surgical procedures including eyelid repair, pterygium removal, laser procedures, and select portions of intraocular surgery. Rotations are four weeks long and include clinic and consult rotations at the VA NY Harbor Healthcare System, Bellevue, NYU Langone hospitals, and a night float system. There is a buddy call system in the summer to ensure PGY-2 residents are introduced to on-call situations.
Postgraduate Year 3
PGY-3 spend the majority of their year in subspecialty blocks. Third-year residents assume a greater leadership role in directing patient care as well as performing more complex surgical and laser procedures, such as strabismus correction and cataract extraction. Residents rotate through four- to five-week blocks including retina/uveitis, glaucoma/neuro-ophthalmology, cornea/cataract, and pediatrics/oculoplastic, as well as clinic rotations at NYC Health + Hospitals/Woodhull.
Postgraduate Year 4
Surgical care is the primary focus of your PGY-4. Surgical blocks at Bellevue, the VA NY Harbor Healthcare System, and NYC Health + Hospitals/Woodhull are approximately seven to eight weeks long. We have a subspecialty elective block at our NYU Eye Center; elective choices include glaucoma, retina, pediatrics, cornea/anterior segment, or oculoplastics. Two PGY-4 residents are selected to serve as chief residents.
Scholarly Research Project
All residents are required to complete a scholarly research project with guidance from a faculty mentor and Chaim Wollstein, MD, our director of clinical research. Residents take part in all phases of the research project including design, protocol preparation, data collection, analysis and interpretation, and manuscript preparation. A research database is provided to all PGY-1 residents to highlight opportunities in the department. The Scholarly Research Committee helps review projects, and the effort culminates in manuscript submission and a Research Day presentation before graduation. There is no dedicated research rotation in our program schedule. Residents may choose an ophthalmology research elective during their intern year.
PGY-3 and PGY-4 residents present their research projects and related journal articles for discussion at a monthly dinner meeting. This collaborative event helps residents prepare for local and national presentations. Residents are encouraged to present research at national academic conferences including the following: Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology; American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery; Atlantic Retina Society; American Academy of Ophthalmology; American Glaucoma Society; and American Society of Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. At the PGY-4 year annual meeting, residents present their research projects and an award is given for the best presentation.