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Recent News in ICO Examinations

Date ICO Member Headline Topic Subspecialty Region
February 20, 2018 ICO Exams and Fellowships

More than 30,000 ophthalmologists have taken 52,000 ICO Examinations at over 120 exam centers worldwide, and more than 1,000 ICO Fellowships have been granted to ophthalmologists from low-resource countries.

Watch this short video featuring Dr. Luis Amaya, ICO Examinations Committee Member and Clinical Sciences Exam Section Leader, and learn how the ICO's Exams and Fellowships are serving to improve eye care around the world.

The 31 March application deadline for three-month and six-month ICO Fellowships is fast approaching. The next opportunity to apply for three-month and six-month fellowships, as well as one-year fellowships, will be 30 September 2018. Apply now.

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December 19, 2017 ICO Member Dominican Society of Ophthalmology: Raising Standards Through ICO Exams

Since making parts of the ICO Exams a requisite for society members, the Dominican Society of Ophthalmology has been able to better prepare ophthalmologists for the rigors of practicing medicine.

"The ICO examination has really transformed the way ophthalmology is taught in the Dominican Republic," Dr. Luis Batlle, Past President of VISION2020/IAPB-LA said in an interview with the ICO at PAAO 2017 in Lima (see video above). Dr. Batlle was joined by Dr. Frinè Salazar, Academic Coordinator of the Elias Santana Hospital in Santo Domingo, and Dr. Jose Asilis, President of the Dominican Society. Dr. Asilis explained that success in both the Basic Science and Optics and Refraction sections of the ICO Standard Exam (the Standard Exam also has a Clinical Science section) is required to join the Dominican Society; Dr. Salazar noted that the Exams have raised the academic level of both students and teachers.

In 2012, the first year ICO Exams were required, the Dominican Republic had just eight ophthalmologists pass the Basic Science and Optics and Refraction sections. For 2017, the number increased nearly tenfold to 78 ophthalmologists. The Dominican Republic currently has the third highest pass rates of the ICO Standard Exam in Latin America, behind Brazil and Mexico—countries with significantly larger populations. "The Dominican Republic can serve as a role model, not only in Latin American countries, but to countries around the world as an academic body of knowledge that can make us better ophthalmologists,” Dr. Batlle asserted. The ICO Exams are the only worldwide medical-specialty examinations.

“The ICO Exams’ goal is to raise standards,” explained Nicola Quilter, ICO Examinations Executive. “The Exams allow candidates the opportunity to gain international qualification and for institutes and hospitals to evaluate their training methods to an international standard.”

Currently, national societies in Yemen, Jordan, Chile, and India are also using ICO Exams in a similar way. 

Learn more about ICO Exams and how to get your society involved.

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November 27, 2017 ICO Subspecialty Examinations

In conjunction with publication of the ICO Subspecialty Curricula, the ICO is evaluating offering related subspecialty examinations. The ICO conducted its first ICO Subspecialty Examination in Cornea and External Disease in 2016. The trial exam was co-hosted by the All India Ophthalmological Society (AIOS) and held online in centers across India.

In September 2017, the ICO launched Subspecialty Examinations in five other curricula-related subjects in addition to cornea: Glaucoma, Medical Retina, Neuro-Ophthalmology, Pediatric Ophthalmology and Ocular Motility, and Uveitis. In addition to the online examinations hosted by the AIOS, a paper-based examination in Neuro-Ophthalmology was given in Cairo, Egypt. In 2018, a new ICO Subspecialty Examination in Oculoplastics will be introduced and additional countries will serve as hosts.

Learn more about the ICO Examinations.

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