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First of all, please note that this review will be, in part, a rebuttal to the other malignant and inaccurate review posted by the person claiming to be a PGY2 resident here at WVU.
There is a significant amount of doubt among the residents here at WVU regarding whether or not the other posting on this website was from a bona fide WVU ophthalmology resident. I am a current PGY4 ophthalmology resident at WVU.
I am nearing the end of my training here, and I will say unequivocally, that I could count on two hands the times when I have violated the duty hours requirements as set forth by the ACGME in my 2.5+ years here. Furthermore, I will say that I have NEVER been pressured to lie about it.
The other reviewer alluded to unfulfilled "perks" promised by our program. I'm not quite sure what he/she was referring to. That person did imply though in that line of thought that our program was having some difficulty with accreditation. This is simply unfounded. We just had our site visit by a representative of the RRC and we received a 4-year accreditation cycle.
Now for a note on the call schedule here. It is a rough call schedule as a first year ophtho resident. However, there is a tremendous payoff waiting for you as a result. First of all, you finish your first year as an ophtho resident having taken as much primary call as most other 9 resident programs take in a total of 2 years! This means that you will have collected an incredible amount of clinical knowledge and skill in a very short period of time. This puts you ahead of the game for the remainder of your residency so that you can fully capitalize on your education and training here.
This leads me to my next point about the call schedule here: with the call being "front-loaded", you have more time later on in your residency to do the things that need to be done as a resident due to the fact that your call duties taper off dramatically. For example, most ophtho residents try to do their best on the OKAPs during their second year to impress fellowship programs that they may be trying to apply for. At WVU, you have much more time during your second year to study for the OKAPs because your call demands are less. (Because you put your time in as a first year.) Furthermore, as a third year resident, you will be wanting to apply/interview for a job or a fellowship. You will have much more time to do so because your call duties will have lightened up so much by then.
In short, to suppose that the call schedule at my program is entirely bad is to be short-sighted. I'm glad that the call schedule is the way that it is as I've gone through the program. Yes, it was hard--but by looking back, I realize that it was truly the perfect for me.
The faculty members here are excellent. We have all the subspecialties covered except ocular pathology.
In the past, there was a lacking of their involvement in our lecture schedules. This was stated in our resident survey, and they responded remarkably well. They now are very active in our resident lecture schedule and the quality of our lectures (which were already pretty good) has improved significantly.
As far as surgical instruction is concerned, the faculty at WVU are excellent teachers. This is a place where you will get extensive experience as the primary surgeon. You'll get vast exposure to all procedures--not just cataracts. The faculty are extremely talented surgeons who know how to teach surgery well. You will be well trained to either go out into the community or on to a fellowship following your residency here.
This is another area where the other reviewer was simply not portraying our program accurately. I am married and have 3 children.
During my first year, we had two children and I would not say that I had tons of time to be with them, but I did have enough time with them. To say that I never saw them during my first year of ophtho residency and never had time to do anything with them is simply not true.
Then as time went on, I became a second year and we added another little one to our family. Now, during my third year, I have quite a bit of time to spend with my wife and children. So, again, the call schedule here is front-loaded, but I have found the resulting benefits to be well worth it. My family life is just as strong and happy as it ever has been despite what the other reviewer claimed about my program.
Finally, I take issue with the claim by the other reviewer that WVU "likes to keep it local." As of now, there are 2/9 residents that attended WVU medical school. I feel like that is a very reasonable percentage of "local" residents at any residency program.
This program is an incredibly hands-on program. All 3 of our first year residents this year did a cataract surgery within the first 6 months of residency. One of our first years did his first cataract surgery after being an ophtho resident for less than 8 weeks! That hands-on nature has continue on throughout my entire residency.
This fact that we work hard and are trained well was a great benefit to me as I was looking for a job. As a result, I was able to compete for some very competitive positions as a comprehensivist. In the end, I got a job from a practice in a very competitive market in the metropolitan area of my choice, and I attribute that to the excellent quality of my residency program.
Finally, I have to say a word about the other reviewer's claim that our residency program is "falling apart and not following through." This program is not falling apart. We were just re-accredited by the ACGME. We have a brand-new well respected chair who will be joining us in a month. Furthermore, our residents are landing jobs and fellowships of their choices. The future for this residency program is indeed bright.