Grand Rapids VA - Residency in Ocular Disease


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college imageACOE Accredited

Affiliated with the
Michigan College of Optometry at
Ferris State University

Grand Rapids VA Outpatient Clinic
3019 Coit Avenue SE
Grand Rapids, MI 49505
Phone: (616) 365-9575
Fax: (616) 365-7509

MISSION
The optometric residency in ocular disease at the Grand Rapids VA Outpatient Clinic will provide post-doctoral clinical education resulting in advanced competency in medical optometry. The residency will provide the challenging cases and attending expertise needed to help develop the resident into an ocular disease specialist. An interdisciplinary approach for providing care for patients with systemic disease and ocular complications will be emphasized. Furthermore, the residency will promote scholarly activities through the teaching of interns, research, and oral presentations to develop the resident into a leader for the optometric profession.

Contact Person:                    
Douglas Coon, OD, FAAO, Program Director
Grand Rapids VA Outpatient Clinic
3019 Coit Avenue SE
Grand Rapids, MI 49505
(616) 365-9575 ext 37585 – phone
(616) 365-7509 – fax
douglas.coon@va.gov
Clinical Teaching Faculty:
Douglas Coon, OD, FAAO
Joy A. Kerns, OD

Optometry Staff:
Renee L. Williams, OD
Sara Seymour, OD
 

Grand Rapids VA Outpatient Clinic: The Grand Rapids VA Outpatient Clinic, part of the Battle Creek VA Medical Center has been associated with optometric education since 1992. Our clinic was constructed in 1992 and provides outpatient care for veterans in Grand Rapids (the second largest city in Michigan) and its surrounding areas. In addition to internal medicine, several specialty clinics are on-site including dermatology, urology, neurology, gastroenterology, infectious disease, wound care, dentistry, podiatry, psychiatry, psychology, social work, audiology, and optometry. Laboratory, Pharmacy, and Radiology are on site as well.

Length of Program: 1 year

Admissions: All applicants to optometry residencies must use the Optometric Residency Matching Services (ORMS).

ORMatch provides:

• Comprehensive listing of all ACOE accredited residency programs
• Detailed instructions for applying to a residency program
• Standardized application forms
• Conducts a fair and standardized process for matching applicants to residency programs



More information, instructions, forms, and deadlines are available at:

Optometry Residency Match (ORMatch)
National Matching Services, Inc.
20 Holly Street, Suite 301
Toronto, Ontario
Canada, M4S 3B1
Telephone: 416-977-3431
Fax:  416-977-5020
E-mail: ormatch@natmatch.com

Application and Instructions

 Download one of the following:

  • MSWord - allows you to type in responses and print
  • Pdf - allows you to print blank form for manual completion (requires Adobe Reader)
  • Rtf - Download, complete using your word processing program

 

Application Requirements:

1. Name, current address and phone number
2. Curriculum Vitae
3. Transcripts of NBEO scores
4. Transcripts of optometric education
5. Three letters of recommendation from faculty members of the applicant’s college of optometry. It is recommended that at least one of your letters of recommendations is written by a clinical instructor who directly supervised you during your Fourth year clinical experience.
6. Brief statement from the applicant regarding the individual’s desire to complete this particular residency program

college imageApplication Deadline: February 1, 2010
For more information, please contact:

Douglas Coon, OD, FAAO
Program Director
Grand Rapids VA Outpatient Clinic
3019 Coit Avenue SE
Grand Rapids, MI 49505
(616) 365-9575 ext 37585 – phone
(616) 365-7509 – fax
douglas.coon@va.gov

OR

Bruce Morgan, OD, FAAO
Director of Residencies
Michigan College of Optometry
Ferris State University
1124 S. State Street, MCO 231
Big Rapids, Michigan 49307
(231) 591-2180 - telephone
(231) 591-2394 - fax
morganb@ferris.edu



Schedule: M-F 8:00am-4:30pm


Stipends and Expenses: The resident received $30,100 for the 2009-2010 year in training. The VA will carry professional liability insurance for the resident.

College imageScope of the Residency: The eye clinic serves primarily older males with a high incidence of systemic and ocular disease. A multitude of chronic eye conditions including vascular eye disease, glaucoma, and macular degeneration are commonly encountered. Acute ocular disease conditions including ocular infections, uveitis, and trauma present frequently as well.

The Optometry Clinic consists of two attending optometrists, one optometry resident, two to four optometry interns, and two part-time optometrists. The eye clinic is the sole on-sight provider of all specialty eye care for our patients.

The attending optometrists and residents are granted hospital privileges and are responsible for treating the vast majority of problems encountered by our patients. The optometrist performs and interprets dilated eye examinations, refractions, visual field testing, corneal pachymetry, gonioscopy, digital photography, and Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT). Minor surgical procedures are commonly performed including dilation and irrigation of the lacrimal system, epilation, foreign body removal, injection of local anesthetics, incision and drainage of periorbital cysts, papilloma removal, and intralesional injections of chalazions. Our attending and resident optometrists are privileged to use topical, oral, and injectable medications for diagnostic and treatment purposes and commonly order imaging studies including computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and carotid doppler ultrasounds.

Patients requiring eye care outside the scope of optometry are referred within the VA system to Ann Arbor VA Medical Clinic located two hours southeast of Grand Rapids.
However, the majority of patients choose to be referred locally to Grand Rapids area ophthalmologists. Grand Rapids VA Eye Clinic enjoys an excellent working relationship with several local eye surgeons.



Goals and Objectives for the Residency:

Goal 1: The resident will gain proficiency in the diagnosis and management of ocular disease and become adept in managing the associated systemic complications encountered in eye care.

Objectives:
• The resident will be actively involved in over 1500 patient encounters through direct care and observation.
• The resident will assume responsibility for the care, follow up, and appropriate referrals of their patients under the supervision of the attending optometrists.
college imageThe resident will be involved in an interdisciplinary approach to eye care and be responsible for maintaining a working relationship with internal medicine and other associated specialties to ensure total care of the patient. The sending and receiving of electronic consults and personal interaction will be utilized.
• The resident will be responsible for appropriately ordering and performing/interpreting special testing involved in eye care including visual fields (Humphrey and FDT Matrix), optical coherence tomography (OCT), pachymetry, gonioscopy, and digital photography.
• The resident will be responsible for appropriately ordering imaging (CT, MRI, carotid Doppler) and laboratory tests and consulting with other physicians when indicated.
• The resident will become proficient in techniques of physical assessment (ie: blood pressure, pulse, cranial nerve screening, mental status assessment, carotid auscultation).
• The resident will become proficient in examination of ocular structure utilizing a variety of techniques including contact and non-contact lens examination and scleral depression.

Goal 2: The resident will gain proficiency in advanced treatment of eye disease including performing minor surgical procedures.

Objectives:

The resident will become proficient in the following:
  • Corneal Foreign Body Removal 
  • Epilation 
  • Dilation and Irrigation of the Nasolacrimal System 
  • Subcutaneous injection 
  • Incision and drainage of periorbital cysts (sebaceous, sudoriferous, etc.) 
  • Excision of periorbital tumors

Goal 3: The resident will gain experience in sub-specialty eyecare.

Objectives:

  • The resident will spend time with sub-specialists in eye care including glaucoma, retina, cornea, cataracts, low vision, oculoplastics and contact lenses. This will be accomplished with the assistance of local sub-specialty ophthalmologists and optometrists in Grand Rapids.

college imageGoal 4: The resident will develop effective communication and interpersonal skills.

Objectives:

 The resident’s verbal skills will be assessed and measured through the following:

  • Effective education of patients regarding assessment and plan. 
  • Presentation of their case summary in a clear and succinct manner to the attending faculty. 
  • Appropriate direct interaction with interdisciplinary providers. 
  • Quarterly case presentations at Grand Rounds. 
  • Lectures given at the Michigan College of Optometry’s Residency Day 
  • Monthly lectures about diabetic eye care to newly diagnosed diabetics
  • The resident’s written skills will be assessed and measured through the following:
  • The resident’s medical terminology and written skills will be assessed daily through progress notes in the computerized medical records system. 
  • Two case reports of publishable quality suitable for admission into the Academy of Optometry will be written. 
  • The resident will prepare a poster to be presented at a professional meeting (American Academy of Optometry).

** The Resident will achieve the necessary points to achieve fellowship in the American Academy of Optometry (FAAO). A total of 50 points is needed: 20 points for the residency, 10 points for each case report, and 10 points for an Academy Poster. Should the Academy Poster not be accepted, a third case report of publishable quality may be substituted.

college imageGoal 5: The resident will develop the necessary critical thinking and problem solving skills to effectively and correctly diagnose challenging ocular disease cases.

Objectives:

 

  • The resident will be challenged by the attending faculty to appropriately collect and analyze the data to create a list of differential diagnosis needed to make the assessment. The resident will be expected to know the reason for every test ordered. 
  • The resident will continuously strive to improve their knowledge of ocular and systemic disease and apply this knowledge in the evaluation, diagnosis and management of patients. 
  • The resident will improve their understanding of experimental design and statistical analysis necessary to critically review medically published and online articles/studies.

Goal 6: The resident will be encouraged to develop into a leader of the optometric community and will develop the skills needed to provide lifelong contribution to the profession of optometry.

Objectives:
college image

 

  • The resident will learn how to effectively teach clinical skills by assisting the attending optometrists with fourth year optometry interns. 
  • The resident will lead online case discussions through the WebCT program associated with the Michigan College of Optometry 
  • The resident will be encouraged to join the West Michigan Optometric Association and other optometric service organizations as well. 
  • The resident will present a poster at a professional meeting.
  • The resident will be an active leader in monthly Grand Rounds which provides continuing medical education to area providers. 
  • The resident will present a lecture to third year optometry students on the subject of ocular disease at the annual Michigan College of Optometry’s Residency Day. 
  • The resident will gain proficiency in the diagnosis and management of ocular disease and become adept in managing the associated systemic complications encountered in eye care. 
  • The resident will gain proficiency in advanced treatment of eye disease including performing minor surgical procedures. 
  • The resident will gain experience in sub-specialty eye care. 
  • The resident will develop effective communication and interpersonal skills. 
  • The resident will develop the necessary critical thinking and problem solving skills to effectively and correctly diagnose challenging ocular disease cases. 
  • The resident will be encouraged to develop into a leader of the optometric community and will develop the skills needed to provide lifelong contributions to the profession of optometry.

Program Completion Requirements:

The following criteria must be met in order to successfully complete the residency and obtain a Residency Certificate

 

  • Successful completion of all of the residency’s goals and objectives. 
  • Maintain a patient log and provide feedback to the residency coordinator at least monthly 
  • Write two case reports of publishable quality 
  • Submit a poster to a national optometry meeting 
  • If a poster is not accepted, a third case report of publishable quality may be substituted 
  • Obtain complete agreement from all residency faculty that the resident should be granted a certificate 
  • Complete all required evaluations and submit them to the residency coordinator at the appropriate time.

Instrumentation:

The Eye Clinic at Grand Rapids VA is well equipped with the latest in ophthalmic equipment.

 

  • Stratus OCT 
  • Humphrey Visual Field Unit 
  • FDT Matrix Visual Field Unit 
  • Sonogage Pachymeter 
  • Kowa Digital Retinal Imaging System 
  • Mentor Potential Acuity Meter 
  • Computerized Patient Record System 
  • Computer with Internet Access in every exam room 
  • Goldmann, NCT, and Tonopen Tonometers 
  • Haag-Streit Slit-Lamps 
  • Electronic acuity charts

Multi-Disciplinary Health Services at Grand Rapids VA

college image

  • Audiology 
  • Cardiology 
  • Dentistry 
  • Dermatology 
  • Gastroenterology 
  • Geriatric Medicine 
  • Infectious Disease 
  • Internal Medicine 
  • Laboratory Services 
  • Neurology 
  • Pharmacy 
  • Physical Therapy 
  • Psychology 
  • Psychiatry 
  • Radiology 
  • Social Work 
  • Wound Care

 

Residents Must Possess the Following:

 

  • Doctor of Optometry (O.D.) degree from an accredited school or college of optometry 
  • License to Practice Optometry in a State, Territory, or Commonwealth of the United States, or in the District of Columbia. 
  • Ability to work well in a team setting. 
  • Self-Motivation 
  • Eagerness to learn

Program Enrichment:

  • The resident is encouraged to interact with other disciplines inside and outside the medical clinic. Opportunities exist to visit Radiology, Laboratory Medicine, Pathology, Primary Care, and Dermatology as well as to visit private ophthalmologists in the area. 
  • The resident is encouraged to interact with 4th year externs from MCO in the long distance Virtual Grand Rounds academic course as well as proctoring intern examinations. 
  • The resident must be prepared for teaching, public speaking, and writing opportunities. 
  • One Friday every other month is devoted to Grand Rounds. The resident is an active participant during rounds, guiding the presentation and discussion of both guest doctors and case reports.


Biographical Sketches of Primary Faculty Members

Douglas A. CoonDouglas A. Coon, OD, FAAO – Program Director
Dr. Coon graduated with honors from the Michigan College of Optometry at Ferris State University in May of 2001. He completed clinical internships at Michigan State University, Saginaw Valley Special Needs Clinic and the Grand Rapids VA. Following graduation, he completed his residency in Ocular Disease at the Battle Creek VA Medical Center. He is board certified in Medical Optometry by the American Board of Certification in Medical Optometry (ABCMO), which requires residency training and accreditation by the National Board of Optometry in Advanced Competence in Medical Optometry (ACMO). Dr. Coon serves as a reviewer for COPE certified continuing education, a consultant for the ACOE on residency accreditations, and is a Fellow of and lecturer for the American Academy of Optometry. He joined the Grand Rapids VA Outpatient Clinic in August of 2003 after serving as a Clinical Assistant Professor of Optometry at the University Of Houston College Of Optometry, where he was voted the Clinical Faculty Member of the Year. He is certified as an Optometric Glaucoma Specialist by the State of Texas and is a Clinical Associate Professor at the Michigan College of Optometry. Dr. Coon and his wife, Dr. Kiersten Coon, enjoy spending time with their daughter, Lauren, and participating in various sports and outdoor activities. douglas.coon@va.gov


Joy Joy A. Kerns, OD – Clinical Attending Faculty
Dr. Kerns graduated with honors from the Michigan College of Optometry at Ferris State University in May 2004. She completed internships at Grand Rapids Ophthalmology, Grand Rapids VA and the University Eye Clinic at Michigan College of Optometry. Following graduation, she completed her residency training in ocular disease at the Battle Creek VA Medical Center in June 2005. She is board certified in Medical Optometry by the American Board of Certification in Medical Optometry (ABCMO), which requires residency training and accreditation by the National Board of Optometry in Advanced Competence in Medical Optometry (ACMO). Dr. Kerns serves as a reviewer for COPE certified continuing education and is a consultant for the ACOE on residency accreditations. Dr. Kerns spent a short amount of time as an independent primary care optometrist prior to joining the Grand Rapids VA Outpatient Clinic in December 2005 as a full-time staff optometrist. She is a Clinical Assistant Professor at the Michigan College of Optometry and is responsible for proctoring fourth year optometry interns and also lecturing to the third year ocular disease class. Dr. Kerns and her husband, Josh, have two daughters. joy.kerns@va.gov

Biographical Sketch of Current Resident

Megan Meagan Baker OD.
Dr. Baker joined the Grand Rapids VA Outpatient Clinic as an Ocular Disease resident in July 2010. She earned her Bachelor of Science from Michigan Technological University in May 2006 & graduated with highest honors from Ferris State University’s Michigan College of Optometry in May 2010, earning her Doctorate in Optometry. Her area of interest is in primary care optometry with a focus on ocular pathology. She is involved in the American Academy of Optometry, the American Optometric Association and the Michigan Optometric Association. She owns a home with her husband in Big Rapids Michigan & enjoys spending time outdoors, camping & kayaking.


Biographic Sketches of Past Residents:

  Ryan Brown
Ryan Brown, OD – Ocular Disease Resident - 2009-2010

Dr. Brown completed his residency training in June of 2010. He accepted a position at a private practice in Northern Michigan where is responsible for ocular disease management and is on staff at the local hospital.  During his residency, Dr. Brown had two posters accepted for presentation at the American Academy of Optometry: “The Interdisciplinary Co-management of Diabetes Mellitus and Severe Hyperlipidemia with Resulting Lipemia Retinalis” was presented at the 2009 American Academy of Optometry in Orlando, Florida and “Anemic Retinopathy Associated with Waldenstrom’s Macroglobulinemia” was presented at the 2010 American Academy of Optometry in San Franscisco, California.   brorya1@gmail.com brorya1@gmail.com

Brent BeldygaBrent Beldyga, OD: Residency Year 2008 – 2009

Dr. Beldyga completed his residency training in June of 2009. He was appointed as a staff optometrist / low vision optometrist at the Saginaw VA Medical Center and is Clinical Assistant Professor at the Michigan College of Optometry. Dr. Beldyga was the first resident for the Grand Rapids VA and was instrumental in making the program a success. brent.beldyga2@va.gov

 


Grand RapidsThe City of Grand Rapids:
Located on the banks of the Grand River, Grand Rapids is rated among the top cities in the U.S., and combines sophisticated charm with midwestern friendliness. Known for being safe and clean, it’s a “walking” city. The downtown features a major new convention center with five star experiences: hotels, restaurants, and relaxation. Minutes away from spectacular Lake Michigan beaches and beach towns, Grand Rapids is known for its major art and cultural events, plays, museums, and a world-class botanical garden.
Visit this Website to find out more: http://www.visitgrandrapids.org/visit.php