Residency in Primary Eye Care/Ocular Disease

Bronx-Lebanon Hospital Center, NY

Bronx-Lebanon Hospital Center
1650 Selwyn Ave, Suite 1C
Bronx, NY 10457

Program Supervisor
Lily Zhu-Tam, OD

Additional Faculty
Tybee Eleff, OD

Dennis Chui, OD

Melissa Lee, OD

Phone: (718) 960-2041
Fax: (718) 960-2045

Description of Program
This program will provide the resident with a rich clinical learning experience through its diverse patient base in the underserved South and Central Bronx communities in both hospital and community-based clinical settings. The resident will have the opportunity to provide primary eyecare to patients of all ages, comanage patients with complex ocular diseases with ophthalmology sub-specialists at the Bronx-Lebanon Hospital Center, utilize advanced ophthalmic equipment and technology, and observe ophthalmic surgical procedures. Daily lectures provided by Ophthalmology Attendings at the Bronx-Lebanon Hospital Center as well as weekly seminars consisting of case conferences, fluorescein conferences, journal club meetings, and SUNY's Friday Program will be available for the resident. After completing the program, the resident will have acquired a high level of clinical competency in providing full-scope optometric care as well as advanced didactic education. Graduates of this residency program will possess the skills necessary to thrive in the areas of patient care, optometric education and leadership within hospital-based as well as private clinical settings.

Program Length

12 months

Start Date

July 1





Hours Per Week

40 (Plus On-call: Average 3-4 days/month on a rotating basis with the ophthalmology residents)


Fully Accredited by ACOE

Application Deadline

February 1



Educational Opportunities
The resident will attend lectures given by the Ophthalmology Attendings at the hospital every morning, as well as participate in weekly journal club, fluorescein conference or case conference with Optometry Attendings. In addition, the resident will attend SUNY’s didactic programs.

Health, dental, retirement, and disability benefits offered through the hospital. Paid vacation, sick, and personal leave also given. The hospital observes 8 paid holidays per year.

Mission Statement

The mission of the Optometric Residency in Primary Eye Care/Ocular Disease at the Bronx-Lebanon Hospital Center (BLHC) Health Care System is to provide the post-doctoral optometrist a rich clinical learning experience through its diverse patient base in the underserved South and Central Bronx communities in both multi-disciplinary and interdisciplinary health care settings.  This program enables the residents to gain a high level of clinical competency in full-scope optometric care as well as acquire advanced didactic education.  Graduates of this residency program will possess the skills necessary to thrive in the areas of patient care, optometric education, and leadership within hospital-based as well as private clinical settings.

Program Goals and Objectives

To fulfill the mission of the residency program, the following goals have been established along with corresponding objectives to meet these goals:

Goal 1: Attract and actively recruit qualified and motivated candidates.

Objective 1:  Established and/or increase awareness of the residency program by distributing informational brochures about the program to every school of optometry through the office of the Director of Residency Programs, Director of Externship Programs, Student Affairs Office, etc.

Objective 2:  Maintain updated residency program description on a web-page designed exclusively for the program and on various optometric websites such as ORMatch, Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry (ASCO), and on the SUNY College of Optometry’s web-page of affiliated residency program listings.

Objective 3:  Represent the residency program at student outreach/residency informational meetings held during major optometric conferences, such as the American Academy of Optometry or American Optometric Association annual meetings, to disseminate information about the residency program.

Goal 2: Select high-caliber candidates from the pool of optometric residency applicants. 

Objective 1:  Every candidate for the residency program must have registered through ORMatch and fulfilled its requirements. 

Objective 2: Candidates for the residency program must either already have graduated from a college of optometry in the US or will be graduating prior to the start of the residency on July 1st of the residency year.

Objective 3:  Interview prospective candidates at the BLHC facilities and rank them according to a consensus of the Resident Selection Committee, which will consist of the Residency Supervisor and at least one other attending.

Goal 3: Enhance the resident’s clinical proficiency and competency in delivering full-scope optometric eye care. 

Objective 1:  The resident will see patients under the supervision of an Attending Optometrist or Ophthalmologist who has clinical privileges at the Bronx-Lebanon Hospital Center (BLHC) and will have a minimum of 1,200 patient encounters by the end of the residency year.  This interactive clinical supervision by house staff will strengthen the resident’s ability to integrate clinical information with didactic knowledge in order to gain effective patient management and clinical decision-making skills.

Objective 1A:  The resident will be providing primary eye care to patients of all ages, follow-up care for patients with chronic ocular diseases (i.e. glaucoma), and acute care for patients with urgent conditions (i.e. red eyes) primarily at the satellite outpatient clinics within the BronxCare network.  Eye care services provided mainly by optometry are available at the following 3 satellite outpatient clinics in addition to the main BLHC campus. 

Objective 1C:  The resident will gain triaging skills, critical thinking skills, hands on clinical skills in the area(s) of acute, trauma and emergency eye care through the On Call service.

BronxCare Medical and Dental Clinic at POE (POE Clinic)
2432 Grand Concourse
Bronx, NY  10458

BronxCare Third Avenue Medical Practice (Third Avenue Clinic)
2739-45 Third Avenue
Bronx, New York  10451

Martin Luther King Health Care Center (MLK)
1265 Franklin Avenue
Bronx, NY  10456

The resident will spend 6 months at the POE Medical and Dental Clinic providing direct primary care to the patients.  The other 6 months of the year will be spent seeing patients at the Third Avenue Medical Practice.  There will be 1:1 direct supervision of the resident by an optometry attending at all times. 

Objective 1B:  The resident will gain exposure to complex ocular conditions in the Ophthalmology subspecialty clinics one day per week after the first month of the residency program.  The resident will rotate through some, if not all, of the following specialty clinics at the BLHC Eye Care Center (address below), which is designated as the hospital center’s main campus: retina (surgical and medical), neuro-ophthalmology, cornea, glaucoma, and oculoplastics. 

Eye Care Center at the Bronx-Lebanon Hospital Center (BLHC)
1650 Grand Concourse
Bronx, NY  10457

Objective 2:  The resident will apply standards of eye care consistent with the American Optometric Association (AOA) clinical practice guidelines.

Objective 3:  The resident will learn to recognize clinical signs and symptoms associated with ocular and systemic diseases.  Throughout the year, the resident will also strengthen his/her ability to form differential diagnoses and to perform effective case analyses.

Objective 4:  The resident will perform age-appropriate comprehensive eye exams for patients ranging from infant to geriatric age groups.

Objective 5:  The resident will gain competency with the basic low-vision evaluation and the practice of prescribing low vision aids.

Goal 4: Enhance the resident’s clinical skills repertoire in all areas of primary optometric care. 

Objective 1:  Objective 1:  The resident will be trained to become proficient in advanced clinical skills such as the following:
Infant and pediatric eye exams
Ocular emergency exams
Superficial ocular foreign body removal
Punctal plug insertion and removal
Three and four-mirror gonioscopy
Contact lens fundoscopy
Scleral indentation

Objective 2:  The resident will learn how to perform and/or interpret results from the following specialized diagnostic instrumentation used in primary eye care:
• Digital fundus photography
• Automated perimetry
• Corneal pachymetry
• Optical coherence tomography (OCT) for macula and nerve fiber layer analysis
• Corneal topography
• Intravenous fluorescein angiography (IVFA)
• Ultrasound biomicroscopy (UBM)
• A/B ocular ultrasound

Goal 5: Enrich and augment the didactic knowledge base of the resident. 

Objective 1:  A list of required reading for the residency year will be distributed to the resident to be completed by the end of the academic year.  The list will include major landmark studies, most of them NIH-NEI sponsored, as well as other notable journal articles in the ophthalmic literature. 

Objective 2:  The resident will attend ophthalmology lectures from 7:30am – 8:50 am daily given by the ophthalmology and optometry faculty members to the ophthalmology residents on various topics. 

Objective 3:  The resident will participate in the SUNY Friday Program (the minimum number of hours is published in the SUNY Residency Manual).

Objective 4:  When not participating in the SUNY Friday Program, the resident will participate in weekly didactic conferences with the Optometry Faculty Members.  This protected didactic time will be utilized as journal club meetings, fluorescein conferences, seminars, lectures, or case-study conferences. 

Goal 6: Educate the resident to function effectively within a multi-disciplinary and inter-disciplinary health care environment. 

Objective 1:  The resident will learn the indications for and protocols associated with systemic diagnostic laboratory tests and imaging studies such as MRI, CT, x-rays, and ultrasound.

Objective 2:  The resident will have the responsibility of composing and sending consultation reports back to the original requesting medical provider.

Objective 3:  The resident will gain effective communication skills through verbal and/or written consultations with different ophthalmologic sub-specialists.

Objective 4:  The resident will be delivering optometric care to patients in community-based health centers as well as the hospital setting.

Goal 7:  Promote community health. 

Objective 1:  The resident will participate in organized vision, glaucoma screening, and/or diabetic retinal screenings sponsored by the Bronx-Lebanon Hospital Center within the Bronx Community.

Objective 2:  The resident will learn how to develop a culturally sensitive approach to health care.

Goal 8:  Develop the resident’s ability to effectively share knowledge and present information. 

Objective 1:  Provide close mentoring and guidance to the resident as he/she prepares oral presentations.

Objective 2:  The resident will deliver major and minor presentations as required by the SUNY Friday Program.

Goal 9: Promote an appreciation for the significance of scholarly activity and professional development.

Objective 1:  Provide the resident with computer and library resources to facilitate scholarly activity and professional development.  The resident will have access to the physical and digital library resources at both the SUNY College of Optometry and Albert Einstein College of Medicine.

Objective 2:  The resident will submit a publishable-quality manuscript by the completion of the residency.  This manuscript may be an original research project, case report, or literature review.

Objective 3:  Encourage the resident to attend and submit paper or poster presentations at national optometric conferences such as the American Academy of Optometry (AAO), American Optometric Association (AOA), or SECO.

Objective 4:  Encourage the resident to apply for fellowship in the AAO upon completion of the residency program.

Goal 10: Provide administrative support for the resident. 

Objective 1:  The resident will have access to a computer station at all times while in the clinical facilities at any location in the Bronx-Lebanon Hospital Center.  The computer station is equipped with software programs to enable internet searches, PubMed journal searches and access to email. 

Objective 2:  The resident will be given protected time to attend national optometric and/or ophthalmologic meetings.

Objective 3:  If the resident is selected to present a paper or poster at a national optometric and/or ophthalmologic meeting, he/she will be granted a set amount of travel funds to help offset the cost of travel.

Goal 11: To evaluate and enhance the residency program on an on-going basis and to conduct a program of such quality as to merit accreditation by the Accreditation Council on Optometric Education (ACOE).

Objective 1:  To have the Residency Supervisor work closely with the Director of Residency Programs at SUNY State College of Optometry to provide continuous monitoring and ongoing feedback of the residency program.

Objective 2:  Hold at least quarterly meetings between the Residency Supervisor and Resident to discuss the resident’s progress and to provide mutual feedback for the resident and residency supervisor.

Objective 3:  Work closely with the College to ensure compliance with ACOE Standards for Accreditation and to seek initial accreditation of the program within its first year.

Bronx-Lebanon Residency Curriculum