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Young Ophthalmologists
The YO Program: Everything They Didn’t Teach You in Medical School

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Whether you are transitioning from training to practice or are in your first few years of practice, you have no doubt encountered numerous obstacles that could have been avoided. That’s where the Young Ophthalmologist Program can help. The YO Program will help you identify those nasty pitfalls in every area from practice management and coding to advocacy and international opportunities.

Practice Management
The Young Ophthalmologist Committee has designed another dynamic YO Program for this year, which will encompass the various areas of practice management relevant to YOs. Regardless of the type of practice you join, you will most likely need to negotiate a contract. At the YO Program, the renowned Wesley Millican, MBA, will impart his experience to attendees regarding the intricate nature of contracts, buy-ins and negotiating. Millican takes on a complicated topic and presents it in a unique manner, making the audience want to hear more.

Fearing your first audit? No need to panic if you have the proper coding knowledge. This ominous yet tangible topic is expertly presented by Academy coding executive Sue Vicchrilli, COT, COS. With nearly 40 percent of claims incorrectly coded, Vicchrilli will discuss specific coding errors and how to avoid them.

Speaking of practice management resources, Ann M. Renucci, MD, will present on the numerous benefits the American Academy of Ophthalmic Executives (AAOE) has to offer to newly practicing ophthalmologists. In addition many valuable resources, the AAOE offers a variety of courses during the Joint Meeting on everything from organizing your practice to refining your management skills. Plus, the AAOE offers resources specifically designed for young ophthalmologists. For example, “To Partner or Not” outlines salient issues when determining whether to remain in a group practice or go out on your own.  

Have you wondered about advocacy and its effect on you, your career or the field of ophthalmology? If so, Parag D. Parekh, MD, MPA, and chair of the newly formed Young Ophthalmology Advocacy Subcommittee will give a fantastic overview of advocacy and what it means to you. He will address how advocacy affects every aspect of your practice, including how you get paid (and how much) and the regulation of the field of ophthalmology. He will also show you the myriad ways you can get involved.

Practice Profiles
Which practice profile fits you best?  This year, the YO Program will offer an opportunity for members of distinctive practice types to discuss their reasons for joining their particular practice and how it fits with their specific lifestyle. “The Practice Profiles: A Panel Discussion” will be moderated by William Lloyd, MD, and will include: Mark Packer, MD, on small group practice; Marian Macsai-Kaplan, MD, on the hospital system; and, Ruth D. Williams, MD, on large groups practice. Join in the discussion at the YO Program.

International Opportunities
Lastly, on the international side, Kris F. Gillian, MD, will outline the opportunities that abound for YOs to share their knowledge and experiences across borders. Dr. Gillian will speak on the need for support and development of programs to address international issues as they relate to young ophthalmologists. For more from Dr. Gillian, don’t miss his guide to Atlanta after dark.

Attending the YO Program can enhance your knowledge of every aspect of ophthalmology in ways you would not have imagined possible. Find out for yourself why past attendees called the program “invaluable” and “a must-attend event for residents, fellows and those who are transitioning into practice.”

Online registration has closed, but you can register onsite or get tickets at the door. The program takes place on Sunday, Nov. 9, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Georgia World Congress Center, Room B406. The cost is $35, which includes lunch and a program guidebook.

Get a head start on your career and join us for the YO Program!

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About the author: Gabrielle Naughten is an executive assistant for Member Services and Marketing at the Academy and supports the various activities of the YO Committee.