The global education network for retinopathy of prematurity (Gen-rop): Development, implementation, and evaluation of a novel tele-education system (an American ophthalmological society thesis)

R. V. Paul Chan, Samir N. Patel, Michael C. Ryan, Karyn E. Jonas, Susan Ostmo, Alexander D. Port, Grace I. Sun, Andreas K. Lauer, Michael F. Chiang

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Purpose: To describe the design, implementation, and evaluation of a tele-education system developed to improve diagnostic competency in retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) by ophthalmology residents. Methods: A secure Web-based tele-education system was developed utilizing a repository of over 2,500 unique image sets of ROP. For each image set used in the system, a reference standard ROP diagnosis was established. Performance by ophthalmology residents (postgraduate years 2 to 4) from the United States and Canada in taking the ROP tele-education program was prospectively evaluated. Residents were presented with image-based clinical cases of ROP during a pretest, posttest, and training chapters. Accuracy and reliability of ROP diagnosis (eg, plus disease, zone, stage, category) were determined using sensitivity, specificity, and the kappa statistic calculations of the results from the pretest and posttest. Results: Fifty-five ophthalmology residents were provided access to the ROP tele-education program. Thirty-one ophthalmology residents completed the program. When all training levels were analyzed together, a statistically significant increase was observed in sensitivity for the diagnosis of plus disease, zone, stage, category, and aggressive posterior ROP (P<.05). Statistically significant changes in specificity for identification of stage 2 or worse (P=.027) and pre-plus (P=.028) were observed. Conclusions: A tele-education system for ROP education is effective in improving diagnostic accuracy of ROP by ophthalmology residents. This system may have utility in the setting of both healthcare and medical education reform by creating a validated method to certify telemedicine providers and educate the next generation of ophthalmologists.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalTransactions of the American Ophthalmological Society
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology

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