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  • Writer's pictureAtanas Bogoev M.D.

Ophthalmology Observership Grants: Travel, Meet Peers and Expand Your Knowledge

Updated: Mar 25

Ophthalmology is one of the most rapidly growing fields in medicine, so keeping up-to-date knowledge is basically a must. One of the ways for ophthalmology residents and young ophthalmologists to improve their skills is through a clinical observership and observership grants.


Observerships allow individuals to meet experienced ophthalmologists, observe surgeries, learn crucial diagnostic skills, gain a different experience, and get to know how top experts our the field think and make decisions. We are lucky to live in times where so many ophthalmology societies and organizations provide the opportunity for observership grants for young doctors in the field of eye care.


In this article, I will share the different ophthalmology observership grant opportunities, list the application criteria and summarize the provided benefits. I will also provide thorough information on how to apply for these grants and what to consider when choosing a grant program.


EURETINA Observership Grants

EURETINA observanship grant for ophthalmologists

Grant amount:

  • €1500

Period of Observership

  • 4 to 6 weeks

​Number of Observership Grants:

  • Up to 10 annually

Eligibility Criteria

  • Trainees in at least their final year of residency or have finished their residency less than 5 years prior to the time of application

  • Currently training in a specialized retinal unit or university hospital in a European country

  • Current EURETINA members

Application Requirements

  • Current CV

  • Letter of intent

  • Letter of support from the head of the department

Application Timeline

  • Submissions open on 07 November 2022. The application deadline is 20 January 2023.


 

European Board of Ophthalmology (EBO) Observership Grants

EBO logo ophthalmology grant

Grant amount:

  • €1500

Period of Observership

  • 4 to 6 weeks

​Number of Observership Grants:

  • 40 Educational Exchange Grants

Eligibility Criteria

  • Residents from European Countries

Application Requirements

  • General information about the applicant

  • You must get a letter of recommendation from your head of department

Application Timeline (2023)

  • Grant Application Opens on 05. October 2022, the application deadline is 05 December 2022

List of Exchange Centers

Additional Notes

  • Applicants in their final year of residency will be prioritized for selection

  • Applicants who already won EBO (& SOE) will NOT be considered.


 

International Society of Refractive Surgery (ISRS) Externships

ISRS logo

Grant amount

  • The grant covers all approved expenses (for example flights, transportation, accommodation, and meals).

Period of Observership

  • 2 Weeks - 3 Months

Eligibility Criteria

  • Applicants must be ISRS Members

Application Requirements

  • General Information about the applicant

Application Deadline

  • Fall 2022

Application Centers

  • South America, Asia, Europe, Latin America, Africa, and the Middle East

Additional Notes

  • ISRS Externship Program is sponsored in part by Alcon, Johnson & Johnson Vision, and Lansier.

Contact for questions


 



European Society of Ophthalmology (SOE) Observership Grants

SOE logo

Grant amount

  • €500

Period of Observership

  • Minimum of 2-4 weeks

​Number of Observership Grants

  • 2-3 Observership Grants per year from each East European country

Eligibility Criteria:

  • Applicants must be ophthalmology residents from East European countries

  • Applicants must NOT contact the clinic or hospital they wish to visit prior to or during the application process.

Application Requirements

  • Applicants must apply for the SOE Resident Educational Grant and will be notified if they are selected to contact the clinics or hospitals they wish to visit

List of Exchange Centers

Application Timeline

  • The deadline for Application is fall 2022


 

European Glaucoma Society (EGS) Observership Grants

EGS logo

​Grant amount

  • €3000

Period of Observership

  • 4 weeks

Eligibility Criteria

  • Young ophthalmologist or ophthalmology resident

  • Your workplace and residence should be in Europe

  • Interest in glaucoma

Application Requirements

  • Fill in an online form to apply for ​EGS observership grants

Application Timeline

  • Always available

Application centers

Additional Notes

  • The idea of the travel grants is to support an observership, which may subsequently lead to a fellowship. The listed above centers also accept EGS Fellowships. EGS allowed other centers to be selected for the EGS Observership program. Make sure to put an accent in


 

European School for Advanced Studies in Ophthalmology (ESASO) Observership Program

ESASO logo

Grant amount

  • €1000

Period of Observership

  • 4 Weeks

Eligibility Criteria

  • This program is restricted to those participating in an ESASO module organized by ESASO Lugano campus.

Application Requirements

  • After attending and completing an ESASO Education module, the best participants are offered to do an observership in the course subspecialty.

Application Timeline

  • All year

Observership Grants Notes


 

I have to share from personal experience, ophthalmology observerships are truly a unique opportunity. They allow residents and young ophthalmologists to gain experience, expand their international contacts and improve their skills under the guidance of experienced ophthalmologists.


The various observership grants opportunities provided by ophthalmology societies and organizations, such as EURETINA, EBO, ISRS, SOE, EGS, and ESASO, encourage you to take advantage of this great opportunity while helping financially.


I would highly recommend once you think a certain program is the one you do the following things: - Research it thoroughly, and read all about it, including the reports of the people who went through the program. - Contact colleague ophthalmologists, who already went through the Observership

I believe that pursuing an observership can be an important step in your career development. It can push you forward, contributing to the growth and advancement of young ophthalmologists in the field as a whole.


Message from Atanas Bogoev, M.D.:

Message from Dr. Bogoev

Leave a comment below or e-mail me other educational opportunities in ophthalmology and I will add them here for everyone (and will give you credit for it)! Thank you! ophthalmologytwentyfour@gmail.com


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