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Residency Program: Empire Eye and Laser Center

Empire Eye and Laser Center (EELC)

Residency in Ocular Disease

 

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Established: 2019

Positions: One

Program Dates: The program begins in July 1st of each year and runs for 54 weeks. An orientation is provided in the first week of the program.

 

Empire Eye and Laser Center

4105 Empire Drive

Bakersfield, CA 93309

Phone: 661-325-3937

Fax: 661-283-3937

Web: www.empireeyeandlaser.com

 

Program Faculty

Resident Coordinator: Vin T. Dang, O.D., F.A.A.O.

Attending Faculty

 

Mission Statement

Providing advanced training and experience in the treatment of ocular disease through patient care, clinical research, education and scholarship in an integrated eye care model.

Program Description

This post-graduate residency program is offered by the Southern California College of Optometry in conjunction with Empire Eye and Laser Center (EELC) in California. The goal of this program is to provide advanced clinical training in the treatment of ocular disease, clinical research, surgical co-management and perioperative care, as well as comprehensive care to patients ranging in age from neonatal to geriatric. Empire Eye and Laser Center’s integrated eye care model will allow the resident to work in conjunction with both optometrists and ophthalmologists in a high paced private clinic that encounters the entire spectrum of ocular pathologies. This organization includes a broad range of sub-specialized eye care providers such as pediatric, glaucoma, dry eye, cornea and anterior segment, therapeutic contact lens, as well as refractive laser and cataract specialists. This structure allows us to care for our patient’s “see better and look better”.

There will be after hours on-call time and two clinical projects required over the course of the year. Involvement in clinical research projects or studies will also be required. Residents are invited to lecture and present case reports at resident seminars held in conjunction with the Southern California College of Optometry as well as local and national optometric conferences.

Program Objectives

  • This residency in ocular disease is based in an integrated OD/MD model and is a rigorous 54 week educational experience designed to provide advanced clinical training in the examination, diagnosis and management of a broad scope of ocular conditions and diseases.
  • The resident will perform mentored clinical care services to patients with ocular pathologies including, but not limited to, the areas of cornea and anterior segment, vitreous and retina, glaucoma, oculoplastics and pediatrics by utilizing medical management options, and when appropriate, pre-operative assessment and/or post-operative management.
  • The resident will also perform comprehensive care of patients including complete eye exams and contact lens fitting.
  • The resident will participate in after-hours emergency care.
  • The resident will observe surgical techniques including advanced cataract procedures, LASIK and refractive procedures, SLT as well as surgical glaucoma procedures and lid procedures.
  • The resident may participate in the clinical research taking place at Empire Eye and Laser Center.
  • The resident will present at least one poster or paper per quarter.
  • The resident will participate in and present at bi-monthly journal review meetings.
  • The resident will participate in national optometric meetings and/or the SCCO/MBKU Residents’ Day.
  • The resident will spend a minimum of 40 hours each week at Empire Eye and Laser Center.

Duration of Residency Program

The residency will be one year in length commencing on July 1st and ending July 15th.

Typical Daily Schedule in Clinic

Clinic hours are typically from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., on Monday through Friday. Additionally, emergency and on call schedule will provided and required to participate in.

Facilities

Empire Eye and Laser Center is approximately 7,200 square feet with 11 medical examination lanes. Additionally, EELC has a separate location—Parkway Optical with 2 exam lanes designated for comprehensive exams. All of examination lanes are equipped with computer visual acuity system, phoropters, and slit lamps. Empire Eye and Laser Center utilizes cutting edge technologies including anterior and posterior IOL Master, Humphrey Visual Field, iDesign, Topographer, OCT, Zeiss Cirrus and digital photography. Our dry eye clinic employs advanced diagnostic and treatment technologies such as Lipscan/Lipifow, and TearCare devices and is an area of focus regarding clinical research. Additionally, EELC employs IPL and Blephex. The surgical center is also on the forefront of technology and employs Intralase and excimer refractive lasers, as well as modern cataract technologies including toric, multifocal, and EDOF IOL’s and is an area of focus regarding clinical research.

Empire Eye and Laser Center exists to provide high quality, extensive eye care to the Kern County area and to patients of all ages through a multi-specialty, integrated care approach. We treat each patient with respect, dignity, kindness, and compassion and strive to continuously understand their needs and exceed their expectations of quality eye care. We are recognized by patients, primary care physicians, ophthalmologists, optometrists, opticians, and patients as a leading group of high integrity eye care professionals.

The resident will also be seeing patients at a local non-profit community clinic, ACE High-Quality Eye Care for All (ACE), approximately half a day a week. ACE provides medical and surgical eye care for an underserved and uninsured patient population: children, adults, and seniors in Kern County which will allow the resident to further his/her training.

Rotation through other Services

The resident will observe surgical procedures by a board certified ophthalmologist and retina specialists. If live observation is not available, the resident will observe surgical procedures via video.

Type and Number of Patients

Empire Eye and Laser Center supports all types of population in a clinical setting. EELC provides broad health care services to an active user population of some 21,000 patients living mostly within the Kern County area in the Central Valley of California. Bakersfield population demographics: 56% Caucasian, 45.5% Hispanic, 8% black and African American, and 6.2% Asian. The resident will be examining approximately 1,200 patients at EELC. Approximately 75% of the resident’s time will be spent in direct patient care; observation of ophthalmic surgery, administrative duties in quality management, didactic, and scholarly activities. The resident will perform full comprehensive primary and secondary eye examinations, consult with optometrists and ophthalmologists in co-management of systemic conditions and ocular manifestations, prescribe oral and topical therapeutic medications, perform minor procedures, and order laboratory and radiology studies as indicated for diagnosis and management.

Research and Educational Opportunities

The resident will participate in and attend all continuing education as well as attending state and national optometric events. The resident has full access to any of the material or services provided at the College. This includes the library and media production department. Empire Eye and Laser Center is a national research center for glaucoma, dry eye, allergy, ocular infection, and ocular inflammation as well as surgical procedures and devices. The residents may participate in these studies throughout the program year and may prepare a project/paper/poster of publishable quality. They will also be asked to participate in case studies and journal reviews as assigned by Empire Eye and Laser Center some of which will be in conjunction with the Resident’s Day at the American Academy of Optometry.

Scholarly Pursuits

  • Residents must maintain activity log tracking research, didactic and scholarly activities.
  • Observation of surgical procedures: cataract, lid, refractive, glaucoma, retinal/vitreous as permitted with scheduling.
  • In office Lectures/Grand Rounds for providers & residents given by EELC eye doctors.
  • Case reports to EELC eye doctors on a quarterly basis.
  • Participate in a state and local society meetings. Various agendas and meetings, organizational and educational duties.
  • EELC Outreach lectures.
  • Minimum of one publishable quality paper or poster per quarter.
  • Attendance at one National CE Conference: typically AAO or AOA.

Stipend

The annual stipend is established by Empire Eye and Laser Center and is based on locality. It is currently set at $54,080 at our facility for the current academic year. There are no stipulations regarding productivity.

Benefits

  • Empire Eye and Laser Center Benefits available to resident: Health, Dental, Basic Life, and Flex.
  • Paid Leave: PTO/CE: 2 weeks and compensated professional meeting time is granted.
  • Holidays: All standard holidays as recognized by Empire Eye and Laser Center.
  • License & Malpractice Insurance: Paid for one year.

Application Requirements

Note that all residency applicants will be evaluated without regard to sex, sexual orientation, race, color, creed, age, national origin, or non-disqualifying physical disabilities.

  • Applicant must have earned an OD degree, or will have earned such a degree by the time of graduation, from an accredited school or college of optometry.
  • Applicant must have taken and passed the TMOD and Basic and Clinical Sciences portions of the National Board of Examiners in Optometry, and furnish official copies of the results of this examination.
  • Applicant must apply through the Optometry Resident Match (ORMatch) and follow the application guidelines. The application is due by the published date in February. Empire Eye and Laser Center's ORMatch number is 39124.
  • A personal interview is required. The applicant should contact the Residency Program Coordinator (Dr. Vin T. Dang) to schedule an appointment for the interview.
  • Applicants should send application matching materials to Optometry Resident Match (ORMatch).
  • Applications will be evaluated by the  Empire Eye and Laser Center Committee, which then recommends for appointment of the most qualified applicant to the Dean of Academic Affairs, SCCO. The chosen applicant is then offered a written contract from SCCO for the residency position.
  • If accepted, the applicant must provide official NBEO and official transcripts of their optometric education and submit them to the Director of External Programs at SCCO.

Required paperwork for residency applicants to be sent to the Residency Coordinator at Empire Eye and Laser Center:

  • Curriculum Vitae (CV).
  • Letter of intent.
  • Three (3) letters of recommendation preferably from instructors who are familiar with your clinical work.
  • Official optometry school transcripts up to the time of your application.
  • Official NBEO transcripts.

Selection Procedure

Potential applicants are required to submit their applications to the optometry program via the Optometry Resident Match (ORMatch) and should contact the Program Coordinator via email or telephone expressing interest in the program and intent to apply. Candidates are highly encouraged to visit the clinic site in person to tour the facility and speak to the Program Coordinator, attending faculty and the current resident.

Candidates with a complete application file (ORMatch application, transcripts, NBEO and TMOD scores, and letters of recommendation) are to contact the Program Coordinator as specified on the ORMatch website. Individual interviews are conducted in person or by telephone conference call. The interview committee consists of:

Program Coordinator, Vin T. Dang, O.D., F.A.A.O.

Clinical Manager, Sarah Le Van
HR Administrator, Amanda Steitz

In the individual interview, candidates are initially asked questions that include, but are not limited to, what motivates them to pursue residency training, why they are interested in our specific program, what their career aspirations are, and how they will enhance our program. Following the interviews, the Program Coordinator tabulates an overall score based on grade point average, NBEO I and II scores, TMOD scores, and interview scores. Candidates are ranked in each category, and then the rank is multiplied by a weighting factor for each category. The GPA is weighted as 1.0, NBEO part I is weighted as 1.0, NBEO part II is weighted as 1.0, TMOD is weighted at 1.0, and interview score is weighted the highest at 5.0. From this, an overall ranking is devised based on the sum of their weighted ranks in each category. From this overall ranking, a candidate may move up or down by up to 2 positions to account for other factors such as letters of recommendation, communication skills, clinical or work experience, and letter of intent.

The ranking of all candidates is submitted to ORMatch for matching.
 

Prerequisites

  • Earned an OD degree, or will have earned such a degree by the time of graduation, from an ACOE accredited school or college of optometry.
  • Applicant must have taken and passed the TMOD and Basic and Clinical Sciences portions of the National Board of Examiners in Optometry, and furnish official copies of the results of this examination.
  • Applicant must apply through the Optometry Resident Match (ORMatch) and follow the application guidelines. The application is due by the published date in February.
  • A personal interview is required. The applicant should contact the residency program coordinator (Dr. Vin T. Dang) to schedule an appointment for the interview.
  • Applicants should send application matching materials to Optometry Resident Match (ORMatch).
  • Three letters of reference are required from full-time faculty members who have been most responsible for the clinical education of the applicant.
  • Applications will be evaluated by the Empire Eye and Laser Center Committee, which then recommends for appointment of the most qualified applicant to the Dean of Academic Affairs, SCCO. The chosen applicant is then offered a written contract from SCCO for the residency position.
  • If accepted, the applicant must provide official NBEO and official transcripts of their optometric education and submit them to the Director of External Programs at SCCO.

Requirements for Residency Completion and Awarding of Certificate

  • Patient care and curriculum criteria must be met.
  • Reporting requirements, to include, but not necessarily limited to, Patient Encounter and Diagnosis Log, Faculty Evaluation, Resident Referral Log, Resident Activity Log, Resident Reading Log, and Final Evaluation of Residency Program must be met.
  • All multi-media and/or materials on loan to the resident must be returned.

Housing

Empire Eye and Laser Center is located in Bakersfield, California, which is in close proximity to convenient housing options.

Local Activities and Attractions

Bakersfield is located in Kern County inside the San Joaquin Valley of California. It is home to much of the nations agriculture and oil production. The region is home to an incredible selection of geography: ranging from the wide-open Central Valley to the peaceful Sierra Nevada Mountains to the striking terrain of the Mojave Desert.

Nearby recreational venues include hiking/backpacking, camping, biking, rafting. There are several museums and multiple parks. Bakersfield has two theaters and an amphitheater that hosts numerous acts and local artists.

Bakersfield is 45 mins to 2 hours from several beaches.

Nearby attractions include Six Flags Magic Mountain, Disneyland, and Knots Berry Farm.

The climate is high desert. Summers are hot with highs reaching the low-100s and winters are mild with temperatures ranging from 40’s to 60’s.

Nearby metropolitan areas include Fresno and Los Angeles.

Commercial airports serving the area are at Meadows Field in Bakersfield, LAX, and Fresno.

National Park Service and other institutional venues nearby include:

  • Wind Wolves Nature Preserve
  • Hart Park
  • California Living Museum
  • Lake Isabella
  • Fort Tejon State Historic Park
  • Red Rock Canyon State Park
  • Tule Elk State Reserve
  • Cesar E. Chavez National Monument
  • Los Padres National Forrest
  • Trial of 100 Giants
  • Sequoia National Forrest
  • San Bernardino National Forrest
  • Joshua Tree National Park
  • Death Valley National Park
  • Kings Canyon National Park
  • Pinnacles National Park

Current Residents

Brittany Hoyle, O.D.

B.S., Specialization in Psychology, University of Alberta

O.D., Midwestern University Arizona College of Optometry

661-325-3937 | bhoyle@empireeyeandlaser.com

Potential applicants are very strongly encouraged to contact the current or former residents listed above to get their perspectives on the program.  Please contact the residency Program Coordinator, Dr. Vin T. Dang, at 661-325-3937 or vdang@empireeyeandlaser.com with any questions.

For More Information Please Contact:

Vin T. Dang, O.D., F.A.A.O.

4105 Empire Drive

Bakersfield, CA 93309

661-325-3937

vdang@empireeyeandlaser.com

 

Amanda Steitz, HR Administrator

3434 Truxtun Avenue, Suite 270

Bakersfield, CA 93301

661-843-7604

asteitz@empiremanagegroup.com