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How to maximise points for your ophthalmology portfolio as a medical student

Ophthalmology is an extremely popular and competitive career option, with one of the highest competition ratios at ST1 level entry (10:1 in 2023) [1]. It is also a highly rewarding speciality, involving: a mixture of medicine and surgery in a...

100 years since Sir William Duke-Elder graduated from the University of St Andrews

With sincere thanks to Andrew King, Ophthalmic Optician and owner of Andrew King Opticians near Glasgow, for his extensive research into Duke-Elder’s life.' Sir William Stewart Duke-Elder. Photo credit: Edward Irvine Halliday, Institute of Ophthalmology. In the world of ophthalmology,...

Leadership and management in optometry: why is it important?

The General Medical Council recognises that leadership and management is essential for every doctor, and provides guidance detailing management and leadership responsibilities [1]. Indeed, management and leadership is part of the core training for all medical trainees. However, to date,...

My top five: Elective grants for an ophthalmology elective for a medical student surviving in a cost-of-living crisis

In a time where cost of living is significantly increasing, and the student NHS bursary is remaining stagnant, funding a medical elective is becoming increasingly more challenging for medical students. Surveys have shown that medical students typically get two to...

Virtual reality for the ophthalmic trainee

If you believe the tech blogs 2015 is the year of virtual reality. Industry experts believe this will be due to the potential commercial release of the poster boy of this new revolution, the Oculus Rift. This is a headset...

In conversation with John Forrester

What made you choose ophthalmology as a career and how did your interest in academia develop? During Medical School at Glasgow University, I was getting progressively disillusioned with the career options while my colleagues and friends all seemed to quickly...

Doctor in the House

“What’s the bleeding time?”“10 past 10 sir”. These are the famous lines uttered by Chief Surgeon Sir Lancelot Spratt (James Robertson Justice) and Medical Student Simon Sparrow (Dirk Bogarde) on a pre-op ward round at the fictional St Swithin’s Hospital,...

An interview with Professor John Forrester

What made you choose ophthalmology as a career and how did your interest in academia develop? During Medical School at Glasgow University, I was getting progressively disillusioned with the career options while my colleagues and friends all seemed to quickly...

Letter from America: Orbit and oculoplastic fellowship, University of California, San Diego

I was the fortunate recipient of the 2012 Keeler Scholarship, granting me the incredible opportunity to undertake a fellowship at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) in orbital, oculoplastic and reconstructive surgery. My fellowship mentors were the renowned Professor...

The New Zealand National Eye Centre and the land of the long white cloud

Located southeast of Australia in the South Pacific Ocean, New Zealand (Aotearoa) is home to five million culturally diverse people. Renowned for its lush nature spanning from unexplored forests to active volcanos and snow-capped mountains, New Zealand has become both...

How to get the most out of your ophthalmology elective

If you are in your penultimate year (or even earlier) and have already decided that you want to do ophthalmology, good for you! Ophthalmology is one of the most competitive specialties, and one of the easiest ways to demonstrate your...

Competition ratios: Is the future of ophthalmology too bright?

In the UK, ophthalmology is a highly competitive speciality, attracting many medical graduates keen to pursue a career in this area. However, in recent years, the competition ratios for ophthalmology ST1 training posts have increased significantly, creating a challenging environment...