Iron Mountain Medical Center Receives Funding for Pharmacy Residency Program

Iron Mountain, Mich. (WLUC) – Oscar G. Johnson VA Medical Center has received funding for two residents in an inaugural pharmacy residency training program.

“We are extremely pleased to be the first American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) pharmacy residency training program in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula,” said Ashley Lorenzen, Deputy Chief of Pharmacy. “This opportunity will bring learners to rural areas of the state in hopes of developing and retaining excellent pharmacists in our region.”

The VA requires that all residency programs be funded by the Office of University Affiliations, to which no new funding has been granted for over ten years. Twenty-one rural VA sites nationwide have been invited to apply for funding in 2021 to launch postgraduate residency programs with two positions each.

“I’m thrilled to have matched the two positions, especially for a brand new rural residency in its very first year, with two stellar candidates and future pharmacists,” said Katie Zeier, clinical practitioner pharmacist.

Residents apply for the programs of their choice. A residency advisory group reviews applications and scores them against a set of pre-determined criteria. Interview offers are then extended.

“During the interview process, the pharmacy staff was incredibly welcoming and really excited to have residents,” said Brianna Filtz, Doctor of Pharmacy at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

“They made it very clear that they were interested in us personally and that we weren’t just another number. I told all my family and friends that it was my first choice.

“I loved the friendliness and hospitality of the pharmacy staff during my interview and during the residency presentation,” said Lindsay Christensen, Ph.D., Ferris State University, Michigan.

“All these different factors are very important to me and that’s when I knew this residency was the right solution. The location of this program was a bonus, especially knowing I could spend more time exploring the outdoors. »

During their senior year of school, residents complete month-long rotations shadowing pharmacists from different types of practice to learn what is involved in each.

After graduation, residents are fully licensed pharmacists. However, like nurse practitioners, clinical pharmacist practitioners are able to independently see patients and modify drug therapy to help patients achieve their health care goals.

“The goal is to keep residents in pharmacy after they graduate from residency and increase retention rates,” Lorenzen said. “We will recruit two new residents each year for the one-year postgraduate residency training program. Future goals would be to create a second-year specialty residency in pain management and mental health.

A residency is not required for employment, but helps pharmacists gain additional education and practice-based learning to compete for senior clinical positions.

Comments are closed.