VA Palo Alto Residency: Ocular Disease – Neuro Optometry – Brain Injury Rehabilitation
NOTE: For information on nondiscrimination in federally conducted education and training programs, see: VHA Directive 1018.
Introductory Webinar Video
The Optometric Residency Program at the University of California, Berkeley School of Optometry and its affiliate programs seek to recruit and admit the best-qualified post-graduate optometrists and to provide them with advanced clinical education and concentrated clinical experience in specialty areas of optometry in an institutional or hospital-based setting. This mentored educational and clinical experience prepares optometrists for lifelong scholarship in patient care, education, and optometric leadership.
The mission of the Optometric Residency in Ocular Disease/Neuro Optometry/Brain Injury Rehabilitation at the Veterans Affairs Palo Alto Health Care System (VAPAHCS) is twofold:
- To provide a mentored learning environment in which residents develop the skills to manage ocular diseases within the geriatric veteran population served by VAPAHCS.
- To provide a mentored learning environment in which the resident attains advanced skills in the specialty of neuro-optometry and adult brain injury vision rehabilitation.
This mentored educational and clinical experience prepares the optometrist for lifelong scholarship in patient care, education, and optometric leadership.1 position available.
The program’s goals are to provide the resident with a varied clinical experience in optometric care with emphasis in ocular disease and a didactic program that complements their clinical experience. The program endeavors to promote an appreciation of the significance of scholarly activity and professional development. Resident mentors will also educate and train the resident in the specialty skill of brain injury vision rehabilitation.
The Residency year is from July 1 to June 30.
The resident is expected to be in clinic five days per week, Monday-Friday, 8:00am to 4:30pm. There are no after-hours on-call duties.
Optometric Eye Care
The resident will provide optometric care to a diverse population of patients including in-hospital patients and outpatients. The patient population is predominately middle-aged to elderly males, with a high incidence of ocular disease. The Optometry clinics are located at the Palo Alto VA and Livermore VA.
Brain Injury Vision Rehabilitation
The Ocular Disease/Neuro Optometry/Brain Injury Vision Rehabilitation resident will gain experience providing vision rehabilitation to patients with mild to severe traumatic brain injury as well as other acquired brain injuries. Patients include those with acute and chronic brain injuries and care is provided in outpatient as well as inpatient settings. The encounters will emphasize diagnosis and management of binocular vision, oculomotor, and neuro-optometric conditions. Optometry is a part of the interdisciplinary team approach to rehabilitation. In addition to optometric rehabilitation, the resident will gain experience working with rehabilitation instructors in all disciplines, including neuropsychology, speech pathology, occupational therapy, physical therapy, recreational therapy, and physical medicine & rehabilitation. Working with instructors from other areas provides well-rounded insight into the care of this complex patient population.
Didactic Curriculum And Teaching Activity
- Weekly optometry conferences, Core Studies, Journal Club, monthly low vision/polytrauma journal club, and periodic Grand Rounds.
- Optometry Conferences cover brain injury vision, ocular disease, and primary care topics.
- Core Studies review major clinical trials impacting eye care.
- Current and significant past literature are analyzed and discussed during Journal Club.
- Grand Rounds is an interactive, educational program on various ocular disease topics emphasizing discussion of pertinent cases and a review of current concepts.
- The resident presents three formal lectures at the Berkeley Optometry Affiliated Resident Lecture Series, as well as informal case presentations throughout the year.
- The resident participates in the presentation of slide quizzes with 4th year optometric externs.
Requirements for Residency Completion
- Complete one year of training.
- Three oral case presentations as part of the Berkeley Optometry Affiliated Resident Lecture Series.
- Submit a manuscript of publishable quality on either a case or research with approval from the Program Coordinators and Director of Affiliated Residency Programs.
- Submit a poster abstract to a major optometric conference (e.g. AAO).
- Submission of completed patient logs as well as program and mentor evaluations.
- Favorable recommendation from the Program Coordinators.
- Yearly stipend of $55,034 (AY 2024-25).
- No fees or tuition.
- 13 days accrued vacation leave.
- 13 days accrued sick leave.
- Approved leave for educational meetings (e.g., AAO, etc.).
- Professional liability covered under the Federal Tort Claims Act.
- Health insurance and life insurance.
- 11 paid federal holidays.
Admissions Eligibility Criteria
- US citizen
- An optometry degree from an accredited optometry school (ACOE).
- Cumulative GPA 3.00 on a 4.00 scale for optometric education required.
- Passage of NBEO I, II, and TMOD prior to the ORMatch match.
- If male, registered with Selective Service prior to their 26th birthday. This can be obtained at (www.sss.gov).
How To Apply
Use the button below to apply for a residency via the Optometric Residency Match (ORMatch) program. The Optometry Residency Match (“ORMatch”) is an application service and match that places applicants into optometry residency training positions.ORMatch
The National Matching Service requires the submission of the following pieces of information that will later be supplied to VA Palo Alto.
- NBEO scores
- Letter of intent
- Curriculum vitae (CV)
- Copy of optometry school transcripts
- Three letters of recommendation.
- After thoroughly evaluating the applicant pool, top candidates will be invited for a campus visit and interview. Interviews by videoconference can be arranged if needed.
- The program coordinators determine which candidates to rank for the match and the sequential ranking of those candidates to submit to ORMatch.
- The final candidate ranking is submitted to ORMatch by the Residency Coordinators.
- ORMatch contacts the program with the results of the match.
- The program coordinators and the program director contact the matched candidates and confirm their intent to enroll in the residency program.
Residency CoordinatorDavid Yang, OD, FAAO
VA Palo Alto HCS
3801 Miranda Avenue
Palo Alto, CA 94304-1290 (650) 493-5000 x68041
Co-residency CoordinatorLee Vien, OD, FAAO
VA Palo Alto HCS
3801 Miranda Avenue
Palo Alto, CA 94304-1290 (650) 493-5000 x68024