NOV 2012

EyeWorld is the official news magazine of the American Society of Cataract & Refractive Surgery.

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20 EW NEWS & OPINION November 2012 Chief medical editor's corner of the world Having mentors—it matters by David F. Chang, M.D. M emphis ophthalmologist Rolando Toyos, M.D., is a busy anterior segment surgeon in private practice, and some may recognize him as the inventor of the intense pulse light treat- ment for dry eye. As a former athlete, he has served as team ophthalmologist for the Memphis Grizzlies, and he founded the Sports Ophthalmology Society of the Americas. Throughout his career, Rolando has also been involved with community service projects. Prior to medicine, he worked with high-risk children as a high school teacher. Later, as a medical student, he received a community service award for helping Chicago City Public Schools develop a pre-med program for interested students. More recently he has been an active leader in the Hispanic community on both a local and national level. Being aware of the relative shortage of Hispanic ophthalmologists in the U.S., Rolando developed a summer internship in his office to mentor and introduce a first year Hispanic medical student to a possible career in ophthalmology. He generously provided a $5,000 stipend and arranged for housing with a local host family. I thought this was a great idea and something that any ophthalmologist could do for an under- represented minority student. For this month's column, I asked Rolando to describe the motivation behind this program and his experience with his very first summer intern. David F. Chang, M.D., chief medical editor Medical student Lauren Arditti spent 2 months in Dr. Toyos' clinic Dr. Chang: Please describe your internship program. What gave you the idea to start it? Dr. Toyos: I came up with the idea for a summer internship for medical students when I was invited to speak at the Hispanic Center of Excellence in Medicine (HCOE) at the Univer- sity of Illinois College of Medicine. The U of I is one of the top 10 schools for Hispanic students. The HCOE was developed to increase the number of Latino physicians by working with students from the high school level up to medical school. Latinos make up one of the fastest growing communities in the nation, and we have not kept pace in graduating Latino physicians. There is a great need to educate Medical student Lauren Fritts and Ms. Arditti with Dr. Toyos healthcare professionals that under- stand both the language and culture of Hispanic patients. On my way to the talk I read an article by Dr. David Chang on the glass ceiling for women in ophthal- mology. I could understand their struggles in the profession and agreed with their point that we need a more diverse membership. After I gave my talk, I had time to speak with the associate dean and director of the HCOE, Dr. Jorge A. Girotti. I brought up the issue of diversity in ophthalmology, and he admitted to me that even though his school is one of the leaders in Hispanic medical students, few of his students choose surgical subspecialties. He couldn't remember the last one who pursued ophthalmology. Ms. Arditti learned how to exam patients with the slit lamp Source (all): Rolando Toyos, M.D. We came to the same conclu- sion that Dr. Chang and the women expressed in his article—the way that we could increase diversity and break any glass ceilings is by expos- ing bright young students to our specialty and then, if they show a desire to join us, mentor them through the process of our profes- sion. So I committed to establishing a summer fellowship for one Hispanic first-year medical student. Dr. Chang: Tell us about the Toyos Clinic and your practice. Dr. Toyos: Toyos Clinic was estab- lished in 1998 with a focus on all aspects of medical and surgical eyecare except retina. We devote a substantial amount of time to continued on page 22 A new continued from page 18 From an economic perspective, one of the boons of a cosmetic addi- tion to an ophthalmic practice is the loyalty that it may bring. Patients who regularly come for Botox and fillers may return to the practice when they need a blepharoplasty, Dr. Simon pointed out. "In addition, every person of age 33 or 52 who has Botox probably has a mother-in- law of age 72 with a cataract," he said. "Also, there's a tremendous crossover of patients getting Botox who also have LASIK." Ironically, it is the cosmetic sideline that may ultimately cement the doctor/patient relationship. Dr. Simon pointed to a patient referred to him by a partner who had cor- rected her vision with LASIK but who probably hasn't seen the pa- tient since. "Ten years later, I'm still doing Botox on her," Dr. Simon said. "She comes to me every 6 months." Overall, Dr. Simon stressed that this is something that anyone can do. "I tell my partners [they] don't have to send these patients to me," he said. "I think that either one of these (aesthetic procedures) is well within the skill level of any board- certified ophthalmologist." EW Editors' note: Drs. Seiff and Simon have no financial interests related to this article. Contact information Seiff: 415-923-3007, sseiff@gmail.com Simon: 305-598-2020, Simon4eyes@bellsouth.net

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