Sep 22, 2017
1
0
Status
Pharmacist
I've been in my PGY1 residency program for 3 months. I've been a hard-working student/now-Pharmacist from the first day I started this career. I am a tech turned pharmacist and I do love my career. My goal, no matter what happens in the path of my career, is to be a good pharmacist.
My program, unfortunately, lacks appreciation for the clinical training component that residents sign up for. The ASHP goals and objectives touch upon patient care / clinical activities as the first goals drafted in the document. I spoke directly with my RPD yesterday and defended myself with these points. I said to her that I have appreciation of the administrative component as well, but that does not take dominance over the clinical activities that we are there to learn. We are shoved data reports that are extremely complex and time-consuming, and the volume and pressure to meet deadlines for these has become unreasonable. It has turned into an abusive behavior where we are constantly interrupted with our clinical activities on a day to day basis. I work 12 day-straight cycles, we staff every other weekend. I confronted my RPD yesterday and proposed to have one day off in the middle of this cycle, a Monday or Tuesday. She said to ask my preceptor if they could grant me this. I then said, "so your priority is that we staff and sacrifice a day of clinical learning?", she defended herself by saying that the program is there to prepare us to be pharmacists and staffing is a fundamental component. There is a reality here in my pharmacy department that suffers from being extremely understaffed and when I work on the weekends I make a lot of mistakes. One, because the training for staffing was ineffective (almost inexistent), second because we really are not learning but just verifying as fast as possible due to the volume of orders and technical issues that occur constantly. We also don't get treated with any respect, the morale in the environment is very low, and the pressure is just too much. I have been falling asleep while driving and my mental health is suffering as well.
I did not know that this program was not well-recommended, but I'm in it already and not sure what to do. I'm in the process of contacting ASHP to get more advice. I'm also thinking of calling a meeting with my Residency Advisory Committee to make proposals to change the structure of the program. If that doesn't budge, then I am going to proceed with my resignation.
Your thoughts and stories are greatly appreciated.
 

PharmD500

2+ Year Member
Jan 1, 2017
1,321
999
Status
Pharmacist
I've been in my PGY1 residency program for 3 months. I've been a hard-working student/now-Pharmacist from the first day I started this career. I am a tech turned pharmacist and I do love my career. My goal, no matter what happens in the path of my career, is to be a good pharmacist.
My program, unfortunately, lacks appreciation for the clinical training component that residents sign up for. The ASHP goals and objectives touch upon patient care / clinical activities as the first goals drafted in the document. I spoke directly with my RPD yesterday and defended myself with these points. I said to her that I have appreciation of the administrative component as well, but that does not take dominance over the clinical activities that we are there to learn. We are shoved data reports that are extremely complex and time-consuming, and the volume and pressure to meet deadlines for these has become unreasonable. It has turned into an abusive behavior where we are constantly interrupted with our clinical activities on a day to day basis. I work 12 day-straight cycles, we staff every other weekend. I confronted my RPD yesterday and proposed to have one day off in the middle of this cycle, a Monday or Tuesday. She said to ask my preceptor if they could grant me this. I then said, "so your priority is that we staff and sacrifice a day of clinical learning?", she defended herself by saying that the program is there to prepare us to be pharmacists and staffing is a fundamental component. There is a reality here in my pharmacy department that suffers from being extremely understaffed and when I work on the weekends I make a lot of mistakes. One, because the training for staffing was ineffective (almost inexistent), second because we really are not learning but just verifying as fast as possible due to the volume of orders and technical issues that occur constantly. We also don't get treated with any respect, the morale in the environment is very low, and the pressure is just too much. I have been falling asleep while driving and my mental health is suffering as well.
I did not know that this program was not well-recommended, but I'm in it already and not sure what to do. I'm in the process of contacting ASHP to get more advice. I'm also thinking of calling a meeting with my Residency Advisory Committee to make proposals to change the structure of the program. If that doesn't budge, then I am going to proceed with my resignation.
Your thoughts and stories are greatly appreciated.
Working 12 days straight is very common. Being short staffed is also common. It seems like you're complaining too much, and you've only been there for 3 months. Residency can be stressful, but I think the residents just deal with it or quit. I'm not sure how much you think you're going to change when you're only going to be there for a year.
 
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rl123

7+ Year Member
Oct 9, 2012
63
49
Status
Pharmacist
I'm sympathetic to your experience... but if this is truly the case, weren't there any indicators of this when you interviewed/ spoke with the then-current residents?
quick remedy: find a co-resident who feels the same, and split the weekend with them: I worked every Saturday for the whole year, and they worked every Sunday for the year- this way nobody ever worked more than 6 days straight. The operational manager didn't mind, as long as 2 weekend staff shifts were covered between the 2 of us each week.
What do you mean data reports?... you don't mean your longitudinal research, do you?

Also, in general- I think all residents have to adjust and have proper expectations of what a pharmacy department is and what a residency is- the department isn't there to bend to its residents, the residency program is often a tool to help the department extend/grow/develop its clinical services- residents have to figure out how they fit into the department as a whole and not vice versa. Weekend staffing is how RPD's justify the program to upper administration.

From a preceptor standpoint- I 100% agree with what yours said
 

KARM12

Super Member
10+ Year Member
Apr 4, 2006
2,646
362
East
Status
Pharmacist
This sounds like a lot of residency programs. It is not uncommon to work 12 days straight... I did that for two years of residency. As long as they are following the ASHP duty hrs, there is no violation there. Did you know this was the structure when you signed up? Most programs are pretty upfront about this and working every other weekend isn't uncommon as a pharmacist.

This conversation and contacting ASHP will not go well for you. Staffing is a part of residency and is patient care. If you are making a lot of mistakes, I would work on improving that or they can fire you.
 

lionheart555

7+ Year Member
Aug 25, 2012
160
99
Status
Resident [Any Field], Pharmacist
How are your co-residents coping with this? A lot of programs are like this and a lot of residents deal with it or kick the can.

If you want to change things, get through it and make a change when you are in charge. If you do want to get through I think toughening out the ****ty parts of residency are a necessity though. I doubt there are many residents that don't feel like they are handed the BS assignments/roles, staffing to fulfill understaffed groups, sacrificing learning to handle administrative work.
 
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ethyl

Go suck on a Zoloft.
10+ Year Member
Dec 3, 2004
904
24
Status
Pharmacist
Curious how this resident has adapted so far. Residency is supposed to involve significantly more hours than a typical work week. How else can you jam pack all that experience within a year? Repetitive reports, administrative and surveillance tasks are common for the first quarter to help build you up. People often do not walk into residency with full ability to recognize med-use problems and all the nuances to the EHR. It takes repetition and the less sexy work to start out.

You seem very emotional about your role. I strongly advise keeping comments constructive for the RPD and stay away from complaining and spreading disengagement to co-residents or anyone on site since this will reflect upon you poorly.
 

awval999

New Member
10+ Year Member
Oct 30, 2005
1,108
674
Status
Pharmacist
My program, unfortunately, lacks appreciation for the clinical training component that residents sign up for.

I then said, "so your priority is that we staff and sacrifice a day of clinical learning?", she defended herself by saying that the program is there to prepare us to be pharmacists and staffing is a fundamental component.
Your post comes off very condescending in regards to operations. I lol'd when I read "sacrifice a day of clinical learning".

Let's be clear, if you cannot staff the pharmacy, you are not a pharmacist. All residents have to staff the pharmacy. You are no different than every other PGY-1.

You are a resident. Accept that. Accept the scut work. The staffing. The administrative reports.
 
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