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Best Pharmacy Residencies

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Iowahawkeye36

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Let me preface this post with the fact that I realize that this is completely subjective, and that the subjectivity is part of the reason I am asking. Sometimes you don't know what you don't know, and I want to see if other students hold programs I hadn't considered in high regards. Also, I realize that there are great programs that aren't large, academic medical centers. I am in know way trying to give credit to those formidable residency, I am simply trying to see what people think in general. My rankings would be as follows:

Hopkins, Mayo, UK, UCSF, UCSD, UNC, Duke, Vanderbilt, MUSC.. In no particular order.

What are other places you guys think of?
 

njac

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Barnes Jewish, UIC, Henry Ford, Christiana, VCU, university of Arizona


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Iowahawkeye36

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Barnes Jewish, UIC, Henry Ford, Christiana, VCU, university of Arizona


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I've never heard of a couple of those. Thanks. What about Brigham and Women's?
 

njac

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Remember that the general rule (not hard and fast) is that where medicine is strong, pharmacy is weak, and vice versa.

So many "big name" hospitals may not have phenomenal pharmacy training.

I didn't do any of my training in New England, so I have little to no experience with the Harvard hospitals.

I would look through guidelines and see where the pharmacist authors are working - that will give you a good idea where progressive leaders in the field are practicing.


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KatleyS

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I used my rotations as a guide when I first searched for residency and at the time, my career goal was mostly hospital clinical pharmacist which is where I am today. So, I looked for sites that would offer a well balanced mix of rotations exploring various aspects of hospital from management, amb care clinics, and hospital specialty rotations (to ICU/peds/ED, etc.). I didn't necessarily look at big names but mostly where I felt like I would like to end up working. I also had a great rotation at one of the sites so I actively pursed a residency there and matched.

I flirted with the idea of pursuing residency at the more famous academic centers, but my past intern experience has been that sometimes the working life of a pharmacist in those big busy academic centers isn't all that great. The pharmacists are constantly busy doing their best, but still receive 'customer complaints' from nurses/doctors/other disciplines and my impression was that the whole staff appeared burned out. There was also a lot of staffing turnover. Not a good sign.

The more interesting worksites have been with community hospital pharmacies where my professors/preceptors worked. The pace is somewhat slower, but they are able to provide more hands on service to patients.

So, bottom line would be I wouldn't pursue a residency just necessarily because it has brand name recognition. Try to talk/listen to the people who've actually worked there. It might be totally different from what you expected.
 
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bacillus1

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    If you would like a well-rounded residency that's a good mix of acute and ambulatory care and a good amount of post-graduation career opportunities, you may consider the VA. The downsides are that obviously there's not much critical care, and said career opportunities may be in other parts of the country, wherever there are openings at the time, but at least you don't need multiple state licenses. If you go the VA route, I would advise doing it in a larger VA facility, as smaller ones may be more limited in the scope of pharmaceutical care that they provide.

    Also, to add, "best" doesn't really exist. Ask yourself what kind of opportunities you want, and find a residency that offers those opportunities.
     
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    Iowahawkeye36

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    Remember that the general rule (not hard and fast) is that where medicine is strong, pharmacy is weak, and vice versa.

    So many "big name" hospitals may not have phenomenal pharmacy training.

    I didn't do any of my training in New England, so I have little to no experience with the Harvard hospitals.

    I would look through guidelines and see where the pharmacist authors are working - that will give you a good idea where progressive leaders in the field are practicing.


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    Thank you all for your responses. I guess these are the things I'm currently looking for:

    1. In a city, doesn't have to necessarily be an Academic Medical Center, but would be nice.

    2. Established program. It's getting tougher and tougher to get a job. Your residencies are going to be worth more than my residency as more and more people are completing them. That is just a pragmatic fact. Therefore, I want to do a residency at a program that will have a PGY-2 in my area of interest.

    3. I would ideally like to have several co-residents. I am a very sociable and amiable person and being around more people makes me feel good/happy.

    4. I'm not necessarily tied to "name-brand hospitals", but some of the reasons they are name-brand are what draws me to a residency in the first place. I want to see all facets of good medicine so that when I find a place for employment, I am ready for anything. Also, some of those hospitals have robust residency programs with regards to number of residents.

    I wish I could read testimonials of all former residents at all sites. Now THAT would be nice!

    thank you all again for your responses. I hope I'm not sounding like a jerk. Just getting advice, it's a big decision.
     

    jmcmans1

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    Thank you all for your responses. I guess these are the things I'm currently looking for:

    1. In a city, doesn't have to necessarily be an Academic Medical Center, but would be nice.

    2. Established program. It's getting tougher and tougher to get a job. Your residencies are going to be worth more than my residency as more and more people are completing them. That is just a pragmatic fact. Therefore, I want to do a residency at a program that will have a PGY-2 in my area of interest.

    3. I would ideally like to have several co-residents. I am a very sociable and amiable person and being around more people makes me feel good/happy.

    4. I'm not necessarily tied to "name-brand hospitals", but some of the reasons they are name-brand are what draws me to a residency in the first place. I want to see all facets of good medicine so that when I find a place for employment, I am ready for anything. Also, some of those hospitals have robust residency programs with regards to number of residents.

    I wish I could read testimonials of all former residents at all sites. Now THAT would be nice!

    thank you all again for your responses. I hope I'm not sounding like a jerk. Just getting advice, it's a big decision.

    I think it would be beneficial for you to first search for and compile a list of programs that have a PGY2 in your area of interest and then perhaps go from there in terms of other things you are looking for. Residencies just get more and more competitive, and the biggest advice I could give to someone (having just gone through the process) is don't sell yourself short by only focusing on highly competitive or well known/reputable programs. Depending on how strong of a candidate you are and what the particular programs are looking for, you may not be the best fit for them or there may be candidates out there that just look better on paper or interview better in person than you. I knew of honors students who were involved and probably had research experience that ultimately did not match, I don't know if its because of the programs they applied to or if they didn't interview well and etc etc etc..so what I'm trying to say is you kind of have to be strategic and realistic during this process. But if you know you are an extremely strong candidate then definitely go for those programs!! Someone in our class matched with UK (viewed as the top program by some of our faculty) and she was an extremely strong, well rounded candidate, and there was no doubt about that!

    I personally applied to programs I knew would be a long shot (i.e. UCSD) but I also applied to some that my preceptors haven't heard of (granted I applied to programs throughout the country). I interviewed at 3 reputable programs (1 mentioned on this thread, one mentioned in a list compiled by our COP faculty), 2 programs not as well known, and 1 that I decided I didn't want to do a residency at (applied since a letter of recommendation came from that site). I matched with one that wasn't well known by my preceptors, but I am so ecstatic about it! At the end of the day you're going to get out of a residency what you put into it (advice given to me by a PGY2, which has been the best advice I received throughout the process). :)

    Best of luck!!
     
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    IDstewardship

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    In addition to what @monkieez suggests, also if you have a particular specialty of interest, try to find out where some of the big names are so you can start making relationships as a PGY1. For ID as an example, Chicago, Albany and Detroit are pretty awesome and would be some main targets. In pharmacy many times it's more about who you know than what you know, as you try to advance your career... And don't forget, as a PGY-whatever, every day is like a job interview.... Good luck!


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    monkieez

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    In addition to what @monkieez suggests, also if you have a particular specialty of interest, try to find out where some of the big names are so you can start making relationships as a PGY1. For ID as an example, Chicago, Albany and Detroit are pretty awesome and would be some main targets. In pharmacy many times it's more about who you know than what you know, as you try to advance your career... And don't forget, as a PGY-whatever, every day is like a job interview.... Good luck!


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    Hmm? I don't think I said anything.

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