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Residency in Ocular Disease at the Harlingen VA Health Care Center

Basic Information

Category Title: Ocular Disease
Program Area of Emphasis: Ocular Disease
Program Site: VA Texas Valley Coastal Bend Health Care System
Program Location: VA
Program Address: 2601 Veterans Drive

Harlingen, Texas 78550
Phone Number: 956-291-9223
Fax Number:
Affiliation: University of the Incarnate Word, Rosenberg School of Optometry
Director of Residency Education:

Stephanie Schmiedecke Barbieri, OD, FAAO, ABCMO, Dipl Low Vision

Director, Residency Programs and Fellowships

Rosenberg School of Optometry

University of the Incarnate Word

9725 Datapoint Drive

San Antonio, TX 78229


Program Application Deadline: January 30
Program URL:

Program Description

Date Program Established: 07/2020
Accreditation Status: Accredited

Click here for more information about accreditation of optometric residency programs.

Combined Residency/Graduate Program: No
Program Mission Statement:

The mission of the Residency in Ocular Disease at the VA Texas Valley Coastal Bend Health Care System is to provide advanced clinical training in diagnosis and management of ocular and systemic disease as part of an interdisciplinary team caring for a population with high prevalence of morbidities.  Successful completion of the program will allow graduates to pursue professional opportunities requiring a high level of clinical expertise, such the Veterans Administration and eyecare referral centers.

Program Description:

The program will provide advanced clinical competence in the evaluation, diagnosis, and management of patients in a population with high prevalence of acute and chronic ocular disease conditions such as diabetic retinopathy, macular degeneration, glaucoma, and cataract. The program will emphasize state of the art technologies including optical coherence tomography, automated perimetry, and fundus/anterior segment photography in evaluation and management of patients. The program will expose the resident to all aspects of ocular disease management including medical, surgical, and rehabilitative treatment options, and the interdisciplinary team approach to management of chronic systemic disease. Additionally, the resident will also have the unique opportunity to gain healthcare administration experience with our leadership team.  The resident will be fully integrated into direct patient centered, evidence-based operations of the eye clinic and the health care system.

Program Length: 1 year
Number of Positions Available in Program: 1
Program Starting Date: July 1
Typical Weekly Hours and After-Hours Responsibilities:

40 hours per week. No on-call responsibilities

Requirements for Completion:

A certificate of completion will be awarded to the resident upon satisfactory completion of residency requirements.  The completion requirements of the program are: 

  • Completed publishable quality paper (research paper, literature review, case report)

  • Deliver one presentation on a healthcare topic

  • Submission of all residency evaluation forms (activity logs, exit evaluations)

  • The resident is qualified to see patients independently under the Rosenberg School of Optometry Resident Supervision policy

  • Successful completion of NBEO Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3


Program Salary/Stipend: $34,888
Program Benefits and Liability Coverage: Health Coverage

Professional Liability Insurance


Paid Sick Leave

Travel Allowance

Other: Ten paid holidays annually. Five days professional leave annually
Completion Certificate: Yes
VA Hospital Affiliation: Yes

Key Contacts

Program Coordinator, Coordinator Title: Jeffrey L. Weaver, Supervisory Optometrist
Telephone: 956-291-9223
E-mail Address:
Program Co-Coordinator, Co-Coordinator Title:
E-mail Address:

Application Information

Application Materials and Procedures:

This programs participates in the ORMatch application service. 

Selection Procedure and Admission Criteria:

Eligibility Criteria

  • Candidates must earn the degree of Doctor of Optometry from a school or college of optometry accredited by the Accreditation Council on Optometric Education prior to the starting date of the residency.

  • Candidates must have passed the NBEO Part I and have taken Part II by the application deadline. The selected candidate must have passed Part II and be scheduled to sit for Part III.

  • Candidates must be eligible to be licensed as a therapeutic optometrist in a U.S. state, District of Columbia, commonwealth or territory.

  • Candidates must receive full unrestricted clinical privileges at the VA Texas Valley Coastal Bend Health Care System.

Selection Procedure

  • Candidates are ranked by the program coordinator on the basis of their application portfolio, including NBEO scores, letters of recommendation, and on-site interview.

  • Rank order lists are then submitted to ORMatch for inclusion in the matching process

United States citizenship is required to qualify for VHA appointment in a paid VA optometry resident position funded by the Office of Academic Affiliations. Reference: VA Handbook 5005/57, Part II, Chapter 3, Paragraph 3.g.(1) & (5)(c), dated June 14, 2012.
Program Application Deadline: January 30

Additional Comments

The Eye Clinic of the VA Health Care Center, Harlingen, has a 4600 square foot capacity, comprising 10 complete examination lanes, 2 ancillary testing rooms, a laser room, and an educational conference room.  The facility currently has 2 optometrists, 2 ophthalmologists, 4 technicians, a visual impairment specialist, an optician and admin staff.  The clinic has Cirrus OCT, Humphrey field, ultrasound, fundus camera, topographer, Nd-YAG and Argon lasers.  Optometrists typically have 3,000 encounters/year. The ophthalmologists perform outpatient surgery—including laser-assisted cataract surgery—in the facility's operating rooms.