Clinical fellowships programme

Monitoring quality of trainee's surgical skills. Credit: Ferdinand Ama

Improving ophthalmology sub-specialty clinical skills across the Commonwealth

The Consortium’s clinical fellowships programme is offering both long-term (one-year) fellowships and short-term (three-month) attachments to ophthalmologists from low and middle-income Commonwealth countries. Through the enhancement of sub-specialty knowledge and skills and the delivery of high quality eye care, Commonwealth fellows can return to more effectively relieve the burden of blindness in their own countries.

We originally planned to offer a total of 100 fellowships (60 one year fellowships and 40 3 month attachments) over the 5 years of CEHC. We have already exceeded this number and are not currently expecting to offer any further fellowships.

We have also been able to fund several 3-month Low Vision fellowships, open to optometrists or ophthalmologists. Applications for these are also now closed.

Participating organisations

The following organisations have agreed to participate as fellowship provider institutions for the clinical fellowship programme.

Please follow the links for more detail on clinical fellowships offered by the following Consortium members:

  • Aravind Eye Hospital, India: One-year fellowships in Cornea, Paediatric Ophthalmology, Glaucoma, Retina and IOL are offered in Madurai, Tirunelveli, Coimbatore and Pondicherry. A one month ROP fellowship is also available. Follow the link to the available fellowships from the item on the homepage.
  • LV Prasad Eye Institute, India: Long term fellowships (currently 15 months) and short term attachments are offered in Cornea/Anterior Segment, Glaucoma, Retina and Vitreous, Paediatric Ophthalmology, Ophthalmic Plastic Surgery and Ocular Oncology and Low Vision.
  • HV Desai Eye Hospital, India: Short term attachments are offered in Small Incision Cataract Surgery (1 month), Medical Retina (2 months), Vitreo Retina (3 months), Glaucoma (2 months), Cornea (2 months), Oculoplastics (3 months), Paediatric Ophthalmology (3 months), and Low Vision (1 month).
  • Al-Shifa Trust Eye Hospital, Islamabad, Pakistan: Long term fellowships in Cornea, Paediatric Ophthalmology, Oculoplastics, Glaucoma, Vitreo-Retina and Low Vision.
  • Moorfields Eye Hospital, UK: Short term ‘observerships’ for two month periods in cataract, cornea, glaucoma (2 weeks only), medical retina (2 weeks only), neuro-ophthalmology, strabismus & paediatrics and vitreo-retina.
  • Singapore National Eye Centre, Singapore: One year fellowships in Paediatric Ophthalmology, Cataract, Uveitis, Glaucoma, Retina, Oculoplastics, Cornea and Neuro-ophthalmology. Competition for these places is extremely high and not available until 2018.
  • The Hotel Dieu Hospital, Kingston, Ontario, Canada (affiliated with Queen’s University).
    The Eye Department is proposing a three month fellowship combining elements of oculoplastics, cornea, glaucoma and neuro-ophthalmology (depending upon availability) as well as general ophthalmology.
  • Misericordia Health Centre, Manitoba, Canada are offering both a three month paediatric ophthalmology and a one year glaucoma fellowship in 2018.
  • 12 month fellowship available in Auckland, New Zealand. A one-year fellowship in oculoplastics is available from July 2018.

The potential Canadian & New Zealand fellowships are now filled and we are not taking further applications.

VISION 2020 LINKS programme: Two to three month short-term observerships through the UK LINK partner as agreed by both LINK institutions.

Applications for ALL of these places are now closed. 

We have also able to offer the following options aimed at non-ophthalmologists  –

  • Team Training –  LV Prasad Eye Institute are offering team training in paediatrics / oculoplastics / VR. If your institution would like to be considered for this scheme please email to express your interest and we will follow up accordingly. You do not need to complete one of the below application forms at this point.
  • Equipment TrainingAravind Eye Hospital are offering a two month Ophthalmic Instruments Maintenance Course, which teaches skills in the maintenance of electronic & optical instruments. If your institution would like to be considered for this scheme please email to express your interest and we will follow up accordingly. You do not need to complete one of the below application forms at this point.
  • Attachments in Microbiology and Pathology. We are making available short term training in microbiology (at Aravind) and in ocular pathology (at the Institute of Ophthalmology in London). Please email enquiries to to express your interest and we will follow up accordingly. You do not need to complete one of the below application forms at this point.

Applications for these are also now CLOSED.

Who should apply

Ophthalmologists who have trained in general ophthalmology and who wish to develop subspecialty expertise which can be put to good use on their return to their institution.

Optometrists may apply for a fellowship in Low Vision at either LV Prasad or HV Desai.

Nurses and technical & laboratory staff may apply for the instruments maintenance, microbiology & pathology courses.

Applicants will only be selected from low and middle-income Commonwealth countries where there is a demonstrable need for enhanced eye-care.

The essential eligibility criteria (listed below) must be met.

When to apply

Applications for Round 4 are now closedApplications closed on Friday 6th January 2017. We are not currently accepting any further applications for clinical & low vision fellowships.

All candidates in Round 4 have now been informed of the outcome of their application.

Applications for the Team Training / Equipment Training / Microbiology / Pathology courses are also now closed.

How to apply

ALL applications are now closed.

If you would like to express your interest, or make an enquiry that is not answered on this page, then please do so on the form at the bottom of the page.

The application procedure

The fellowship advisory committee will match the most deserving candidates to the most appropriate fellowship or attachment for their chosen sub-specialty and inform the applicant and fellowship provider.

It is currently looking extremely unlikely that there will be a further round of CEHC fellowships.  However, if you would like to express your interest in potential future fellowships, please do so using the contact from below.

If we are able to award further fellowships, we will be looking particularly to award fellowships in regions & countries that have otherwise not benefited from this programme, and to make awards for the team training & equipment training courses.

Following this selection process, the applicant will be asked to apply in the usual way to the chosen provider institution, who will retain the right of veto, should the application not be found to be satisfactory.

Once accepted, successful applicants will be required to sign an acceptance contract with the fellowship provider institution and with the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, on behalf of the Commonwealth Eye Health Consortium and Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust.

Clinical fellowships eligibility criteria

Essential – the applicant must:

      • be from an institution in a Commonwealth country in which there is a demonstrable need for enhanced eye care
      • have completed specialist ophthalmology training and a higher exam in ophthalmology by the time the fellowship begins
      • have letters of support from the head of department and the hospital executive director stating that this fellowship / attachment will provide relevant, positive and desirable training in their context and that the applicant will be properly resourced (with a position, facilities and equipment) to develop their clinical specialty on their return.

Desirable – the applicant should:

      • be within 5 years of completing the above qualification (or may be more senior in the case of short term attachments to enhance or update specialist skills)
      • work in a government hospital, university hospital or NGO unit
      • have a role in training others.

More information

To find out more about the individual fellowships / attachments on offer please follow the links above to the participating organisations.

For general enquiries, please contact us @ 


Image credit: Ferdinand Ama

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