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Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center - Houston, Texas

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Frequently Asked Questions

Pharmacy Residencies
Overview
Residencies
PGY1 Pharmacy | PGY1/PGY2/MS Admin
PGY2 Ambulatory Care | PGY2 Infectious Disease
PGY2 Psychiatric Pharmacy
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Does your program participate in the ASHP Personnel Placement Services (PPS)?
How many residency positions are available?
How are residents selected?
How long has the residency programs been in existence?
Is the program flexible if my interests change throughout the residency?
What longitudinal learning experiences do the residents partakes in?
Which rotations are offered at MEDVAMC?
Which off-site rotations are available to residents?
What teaching opportunities are available to residents? 
How do residents select research projects?
What projects and presentations are required by the residents?
Which conferences do the residents attend?
How are the pharmacists/preceptors involved with professional organizations?
What positions will I be prepared to accept after completion of this residency?
What are the staffing responsibilities for residents?
What resources will I have access to during my residency?
Where do residents park? 

 

 

Does your program participate in the ASHP Personnel Placement Services?

No, the Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center (MEDVAMC) does not participate in PPS.

How many residency positions are available?

For the next residency year, MEDVAMC will accept five PGY1 Pharmacy residents, one PGY1/PGY2/MS Health-System Pharmacy Administration resident, one PGY2 Infectious Diseases resident, one PGY2 Mental Health resident, and one PGY2 Ambulatory Care resident.

How are residents selected?

The MEDVAMC conducts a rigorous screening process in which applicants who complete all requirements by the application deadline are reviewed by clinical preceptors. Interviews are awarded in the early spring and all candidates are selected through the ASHP resident match process.

How long has the residency programs been in existence?

The MEDVAMC PGY1 residency program was started in 2005, and the PGY1/PGY2/MS Health-System Pharmacy Administration Residency was launched in 2009. The PGY2 programs in Ambulatory Care and Infectious Diseases accepted their first class of residents in 2013. The PGY2 program in Mental Health accepted its first resident in 2016.

Is the program flexible if my interests change throughout the residency?

The residency program directors and clinical preceptors will collaborate with you if your interests change. Everyone involved in the program is focused on ensuring the residents get the most out of their respective programs.

What longitudinal learning experiences do the residents partake in?

PGY1 Pharmacy residents will participate in a weekly longitudinal ambulatory care clinic (primary care, HIV, mental health, home-based primary care, heart failure, or Center of Excellence in Primary Care Education). Residents will also develop interdisciplinary teamwork skills through the Center of Excellence in Primary Care Education rotation, an academic partnership between the Medicine, Psychology, Pharmacy, and Nurse Practitioner residency programs.

Which rotations are offered at MEDVAMC?

Required rotations include internal medicine, transplant, infectious diseases, Center of Excellence in Primary Care Education, critical care (SICU/MICU/CCU), practice management, and research. Elective rotations include academia, cardiology, anticoagulation, emergency medicine, mental health (inpatient and outpatient), geriatrics, home-based primary care, primary care, HIV clinic, oncology, and spinal cord injury. Residents may also choose to repeat an elective in their area of interest or complete an elective at one of the other hospitals in the Texas Medical Center.

Which off-site rotations are available to residents?

Residents may complete off-site rotations in oncology, Emergency Department, nutritional support, cardiology, and critical care at MD Anderson Cancer Center, and transplant, cardiology, solid organ transplant, and psychiatry rotations at The Houston Methodist Hospital. All off-site rotations require Texas licensure. Health-System Pharmacy Administration residents can complete a VA Regional Office (VISN) rotation and VA National Office rotation during their PGY2 residency year.

What teaching opportunities are available to residents?

Residents can earn a teaching certificate through the University of Houston College of Pharmacy (UHCOP). Residents can also lecture and facilitate a therapeutics skills lab at UHCOP. Residents will also precept pharmacy students from four Texas colleges (TSU, UHCOP, The University of Texas, Texas A&M) who have their Advanced Pharmacy Practice Experimental (APPE) rotations at MEDVAMC. Other teaching opportunities are available by collaborating with nursing, medical, and physician assistant students while on rotation.

How do residents select research projects?

Residents are presented with a list of potential research projects from preceptors and former residents. Current resident project ideas are encouraged, but decisions will be contingent upon preceptor availability and the time limitations from a one year residency.

What projects and presentations are required by the residents?

In addition to presentations and projects required on specific rotations, residents are expected to present at two journal clubs, two case presentations, and one grand rounds presentation to the pharmacy staff and fourth-year pharmacy students. Each resident will also serve as editor for an edition of the VA newsletter. Additionally, residents will complete and present their results from their research project, including a poster presentation at the ASHP Midyear Clinical Meeting and a podium presentation at the Texas Society of Health-System Pharmacists (TSHP) Alcalde conference.

Which conferences do the residents attend?

All PGY1 residents present their research at the ASHP Midyear Clinical Meeting in December and TSHP Alcalde in April. All PGY2 residents present at ASHP Midyear Clinical meeting and other conferences depending on requirements of their specific residency program.

How are the pharmacists / preceptors involved with professional organizations?

Many of the preceptors are highly involved in the TSHP and the Gulf Coast Society of Health-System Pharmacists (GCSHP). Dr. Nguyen has previously served as GCSHP President. Dr. Kathleen Morneau is the current GCSHP President-elect. Becoming a member of these two organizations during residency is highly recommended. Preceptors and residents are also involved with ASHP.

What positions will I be prepared to accept after completion of this residency?

Residents who complete the PGY1 Pharmacy residency will be prepared for a PGY2 residency in their preferred area or accept a Clinical Pharmacy Specialist position. Residents who complete the PGY1/PGY2/MS Health-System Pharmacy Administration Residency will be equipped to seek an administration position in a large health-system.

What are the staffing responsibilities for residents?

Residents are required to staff 200 hours, including two minor holidays and one major holiday. This averages to about every 3rd or 4th weekend. Inpatient staffing includes medication order verification. Outpatient staffing involves medication order verification for patients being discharged. Residents will also complete clinical staffing which involves medication reconciliation, discharge counseling, prior authorization requests, pharmacotherapy drug monitoring, and attend codes.

What resources will I have access to during my residency?

MEDVAMC Pharmacy residents will have access to Lexi-Comp, Clinical Pharmacology, Micromedex, The Sanford Guide to Antimicrobial Therapy, DynaMed, AccessPharmacy, and the VA Library, which has access to many medical and pharmacy journals.

Where do the residents park at MEDVAMC?

Free onsite parking is available for all residents! This is rare in the Texas Medical Center.