Article Date: 3/1/2005


UAB Dedicates New Teaching Clinic

Open for Business (L to R): Carol Z. Garrison, UAB President; Martha Greenberg, O.D., Alabama Optometric Association president; John F. Amos, O.D., UABSO dean; Lynn Hammonds, O.D., UABSO Alumni Association president; William H. Sullins, O.D, Alabama Board of Optometrists; and Rodney Nowakowski, O.D., UABSO.

Officials from the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Optometry (UABSO) and about 450 guests celebrated the opening of their newly renovated teaching clinic in November 2004.

University of Alabama Eye Care is a state-of-the-art, multidisciplinary facility where students can gain hands-on clinical experience while serving the community's eyecare needs. The 34,000-square foot clinic includes an expanded optical boutique, a low-vision rehabilitation and training area, an enclosed pediatrics area and advanced diagnostic testing for glaucoma and other eye diseases.

Research on PALs at OSU

Progressive addition lenses (PALs) are the most profitable -- and most complex--- spectacle lenses sold in optometric offices. That's why James E. Sheedy, O.D., Ph.D., established the Center for Ophthalmic Optics Research (COOR) at The Ohio State University College of Optometry.

"Patients prefer PALs over standard multifocal lenses, not only cosmetically, but also visually," Dr. Sheedy says. "As optometrists, we're obligated to understand the optics of PALs. Only then can we recommend spectacle lenses that meet each patient's individual needs."

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NEWENCO Program Targets Diagnostic Skills

The New England College of Optometry (NEWENCO) received a 3-year, $380,000 federal grant to develop "Interactive Cases and Asynchronous Instruction in Training Eyecare Providers" (ICAITEP), a CD-ROM-based program designed to help students and practicing O.D.s improve their critical thinking, observation and reasoning skills.

"Practitioners tend to see the same conditions and diseases in their patient populations," says William Sleight, O.D., associate professor at the NEWENCO and ICAITEP project director. "One day, they may see an ocular disease they haven't seen in 20 years. Our three-tier program trains practitioners to recognize, recall and diagnose a broader spectrum of ocular diseases, including infrequently encountered conditions."

Interactivity is an important part of ICAITEP. "Every mouse click should represent a decision or a pathway to a decision," Dr. Sleight says. "As participants work through the program, they're training themselves to think critically and become better eye doctors."


Of the 2,102 examinees who took the fall 2004 Optometry Admission Test, 67.8% were women and 32.2% were men. The breakdown by ethnic groups was: 56.8% white; 29.8% Asian; 7.0% Hispanic; 5.8% black; and 0.6% American Indian.


Optometric Management, Issue: March 2005