Alisa Barash, SOE Teacher Observership Report from the University of Florence, Italy

I express my deepest gratitude to the SOE Educational Committee and Prof. Marko Hawlina for the SOE Teacher Grant award and the delightful opportunity of observership at one of the leading European ophthalmic centres.

The University of Florence is an important and influential centre for research and higher training in Italy. The ophthalmic unit based on Careggi University Hospital which provide the highest quality of ophthalmic care. During my training, I was fortunate to take part in the examinations of patients in the oculoplastic and ocular ophthalmology clinics, to observe rare and complex patients.

I was exposed to high volume oculoplastic surgery and was able to witness the broad surgical expertise of  Dr. Nicola Santoro with procedures such as eyelid tumor excisions with eyelid reconstruction, lacrimal duct surgery, ectropion and entropion surgeries, blepharoplasty, ptosis reconstruction, eye removal surgery, postenuckleation socket syndrome reconstruction, orbital decompression etc.

I continued my program with fantastic opportunity to attend monthly multidisciplinary oncology meeting of ophthalmic tumors (tumors of the eyelid, conjunctiva, intraocular structures and orbit) which participation of different specialists such as oncologists, ophthalmologists, radiotherapists, anatomical pathologists, maxillofacial surgeons and dermatologists. The purpose of this standardized way of teamwork is defining of responsibilities and approaches to diagnostic and treatment measures of ocular tumors for optimizing integration and coordination between different professional figures.

I would like to address my thanks to the Head of Clinic Prof. Dr. Fabrizio Giansanti and his perfect team of experts Dr. Nicola Santoro, Dr. Cinzia Mazzini, Dr. Giulia Pieretti who shared their knowledge with great enthusiasm. I’m very grateful for all fellows, nurses and staff for very pleasant working atmosphere.

This observership has widened my knowledge, improved my professional and teaching skills and gave me new professional contacts.  I would recommend this medical centre to all future SOE Grant applicants and wish them a good luck!