by Dr Theodoros Potamites
Associate Professor in Ophthalmology

This years’ Pantheo congress was a great success.  Without a doubt the highlight of the meeting was the Alistair Fielder Prize in Ophthalmology given to the best presentation by a medical student or junior trainee.  Ten UNic Medical School students from both the MD and the MBBS programmes presented, and one trainee from Makarios Hospital.  All the students were given cases and small projects from Pantheo Eye Center and received coaching by myself, Dr Katia Papastavrou and Dr Antigoni Koukkoulli.

The judging committee consisted of three members: Alistair Fielder, Professor Emeritus of Ophthalmology at UCL London; Mike Burdon, President of the Royal College of Ophthalmologists; and Maria Tsaloumas, Consultant Ophthalmologist. The students were judged on three parameters: Content, Scientific Merit and Presentation.

All the presentations were excellent, and it proved to be a difficult call for the judges.

The winner of the first Alistair Fielder Prize in Ophthalmology is Catriona Walker whose presentation was entitled Sleepless in the ITU. The prize was an engraved ophthalmoscope.

In fact, the president of the Midland Ophthalmological Society was so impressed that he suggested that next year’s prize be an all-expenses paid invitation to give a talk at their annual event which takes place every October in the UK.  In return, they will give a prize to their best trainee to present at our meeting in 2018.

I am sure I do not have to tell you how important it is for the students not only to present at meetings but also to have the chance to work on research projects.  We are very proud of what our students achieved at the congress.  They were all very professional in their approach and stood up to some very difficult questions, proving they had done their background research well.  We believe that the Medical School should encourage these activities.  We run an afternoon of research and academic activities on Thursdays.  All students are welcome if they want to participate.  For more information you can email: [email protected]

The students who participated: Chrysostomos Muwonge, Hugh Elliot, Alexandra Popa, Ioannis Balanos, Caroline Mc Burney, Jaskiran Dulai, Nikolas Popa, Furhana Hussein, Catriona Walker, Cylene Yang.