Learning at Casey

We believe that a supportive and respectful environment that emphasizes team work and service best facilitates development for residents. Our hope is that we will not only train residents with the best and the latest knowledge and skills, but that they would leave this place with the tools to become lifetime learners who will adapt and evolve with changes in our field. 

Clinical rotations

Clinical rotations are offered at OHSU, Portland VA Medical Center next door (connected by a footbridge), and Devers Eye Institute at Legacy Health, just three miles away from the main campus. In the first year, residents build fundamentals through comprehensive ophthalmology clinics and exposure to retina, uveitis, pediatric ophthalmology, oculoplastics, neuro-ophthalmology, and pathology. In the second year, residents continue developing as ophthalmic surgeons and consultant, with emphasis on retina, glaucoma, cornea, and pediatric ophthalmology. In the final year offers opportunities for independent clinical management and intensive surgical experience. 

OHSU VA Hallway image

Microsurgical curriculum

Before the residents operate in the patient eye, they are led through a curriculum of wet lab and EyeSi surgical simulator. The faculty provide individualized instruction for residents and the program provides dedicated time for the residents to practice and improve. During the first two years of the program, residents are exposed to surgery in a graded fashion and perform dozens of cataract surgeries as primary surgeon. This foundation prepares residents for increased surgical volume and complexity during their final year of training. In addition, oculoplastics service runs an annual dissection lab for further training in lid, lacrimal system and orbits.

Resident Evaluations

Resident evaluations are constructed to reflect performance in the six core competencies as outlined by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education. Each resident is evaluated in the following six core competencies:

  • Patient care
  • Medical knowledge
  • Professionalism
  • Interpersonal and communication skills
  • Practice-based learning and improvement
  • Systems-based practice

At the conclusion of each rotation, faculty members who have supervised the resident will evaluate their performance. In order to obtain a more comprehensive assessment of resident performance, evaluations are also obtained from patients and staff. The evaluations are written and become part of the resident's permanent record.  Starting in July 2014, resident performance is evaluated semi-annually by the Clinical Competency Committee (CCC).  Performance will be tied to the ACGME Milestones for Ophthalmology that became available in July 2014.  In an effort to identify strengths and weaknesses in the residency as early as possible, the program director meets formally and individually with each resident at minimum every 6 months.  The program director also meets with residents as a group at least quarterly.  Residents input is routinely sought and has always been integral to program development.

Lectures and conferences

Grand rounds

Grand Rounds are held twice a month on Friday mornings. Invited speakers and faculty present lectures on a variety of topics of contemporary interest in ophthalmology.


Every Friday morning, the faculty present a lecture series covering all subspecialty areas plus ethics and international ophthalmology on a two year cycle for the residents. 


There are a dozen case-oriented conferences that are organized by subspecialties for the residents. They include retina, cataract surgery, glaucoma, neuro-ophthalmology, imaging, neuro-radiology, oculoplastics, cornea, genetics and uveitis. Residents also present a case-based learning formal lecture to the chairman and their colleagues in the Chairman's Conference. In addition, we offer a Practice Improvement curriculum, focusing on quality improvement, safety, practice engagement, billing and efficiency.