PGY1/PGY2 Pharmacotherapy

The Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) Health is a 750-bed tertiary care academic medical center providing care for patients of Charleston and throughout the state of South Carolina. MUSC is the #1 ranked hospital in South Carolina and nationally ranked in 10 specialties. In addition to general medical and surgical services, MUSC offers a variety of specialty services including emergency medicine/toxicology, cardiology/cardiothoracic, neurology/neurosurgery (comprehensive stroke center), transplant (kidney, pancreas, liver, heart, lung) trauma (level 1), burn unit, psychiatry, and numerous pediatric services. The medical center is comprised of four hospitals - University Hospital, Ashley River Tower, Children's Hospital, and the Institute of Psychiatry. Outpatient facilities include Hollings Cancer, Ashley River Tower clinics, Rutledge Tower clinics, Family Medicine Center, and affiliated faculty practice ambulatory care centers. The Department of Pharmacy Services provides service to patients on a 24-hour basis through multiple inpatient and ambulatory pharmacies to fulfill the department's mission, vision, and goals of providing optimal pharmaceutical care to all patients.

The PGY1/2 Pharmacotherapy residency program at MUSC Health is a two-year post-graduate training program designed to prepare clinical pharmacy specialists. The resident will participate in care of this broad patient population focusing on inpatient and ambulatory management and, upon completion of the program, are qualified to accept a position and practice in a variety of environments. As part of the extensive training residents will receive, they will be able to identify, prevent, and resolve medication-related problems, participate as active members of a multidisciplinary healthcare team, provide education to various healthcare providers and patients, conduct effective research and medication-use-evaluations, and demonstrate leadership skills.

Residents in PGY-1 residency programs are provided the opportunity to accelerate their growth beyond entry-level professional competence in patient-centered care and in pharmacy operational services, and to further the development of leadership skills that can be applied in any position and in any practice setting. PGY-1 residents acquire substantial knowledge required for skillful problem solving, strengthening their professional values and attitudes, and advancing the growth of their clinical judgment. The instructional emphasis is on the progressive development of clinical judgment, a process begun in the advanced pharmacy practice experiences of the professional school years but requiring further extensive practice, self-reflection, and shaping of decision-making skills fostered by feedback on performance. The resident will complete the requirements for a PGY1 certificate during the first 15 months of residency due to the unique nature of block scheduling rotations.

The PGY-2 pharmacotherapy residency program builds on Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) education and PGY-1 pharmacy residency programs to contribute to the development of clinical pharmacists in specialized areas of practice. PGY-2 residencies provide residents with opportunities to function independently as practitioners by conceptualizing and integrating accumulated experience and knowledge and incorporating both into the provision of patient care of other advanced practice settings. Residents who successfully complete and accredited PGY-2 pharmacy residency are prepared for advanced patient care, academic, or other specialized, along with board certification, if available.

Specific residency goals and objectives will be established in the beginning of the residency and modified according to the resident’s interests and previous experiences and advisor input. To meet the purpose of the residency, the resident will advance to achieve the following outcomes:

  • Proficiency in providing pharmaceutical care to patients in a variety of environments including, but not limited to intensive care units, medicine, general pediatrics, emergency department, and ambulatory clinics
  • Provide evidence-based, patient-centered medication therapy management as active members of an interdisciplinary team
  • Provide education to healthcare professionals and patients
  • Develop skills needed to create/modify protocols and guidelines and participate in cost-saving initiatives
  • Attain board certification in practice area (i.e. BCPS)
  • Manage and improve the medication-use process
  • Exercise leadership and practice management
  • Demonstrate project management skills

The Residency Advisor(s) are appointed by the Residency Program Director (RPD) and are responsible for the supervision, guidance, and on-going evaluation of the resident's progress throughout the residency. Advisors serve as the resident's advocate and can be a sounding board for the resident, foster professional development, assist with future career planning, provide support and encouragement through difficult times, and share in rewarding times in the residency. Additionally, each resident will have multiple mentors for research projects, presentation development, and personal mentorship.

The Pharmacotherapy Residency at MUSC Health is a post PharmD program which provides 24 months of training in a contemporary pharmacy practice. The experience is intended to build knowledge and clinical skills across all areas of pharmacotherapy and provide both institutionally-based and ambulatory practice. In addition, the pharmacotherapy residents will work with pediatric, adult, and geriatric patient populations. Rotations are one month long and are blocked according to specialty (e.g. pediatric rotations will be scheduled consecutively). Note, this blocking of specialties is subject to rotation availability and resident preference. The resident will have various levels of involvement in longitudinal clinical research, department of pharmacy service projects, and the education of others.

Learning Experience and Rotation Length

Orientation | 1 month (July)
Clinical Generalist Rotation | 1 month
Drug Information | 1 month
Practice Management | 1 month
Ambulatory Care Block* | 2 month minimum
Pediatrics Block* | 2 month minimum
Psychiatry Block* | 2 month minimum
Acute Care / Internal Medicine Block* | 4 month minimum
Critical Care Block* | 4 month minimum
Electives (any selectives or electives below) | 5 months, customized to resident
Longitudinal Clinic | ½ day per week throughout residency

*Certain learning experiences are required but selective in that residents may select the specific learning experience under a more general topic (e.g. cardiology as an acute care rotation; pediatric hematology/oncology as a pediatrics rotation)

Acute Care
Abdominal Transplant
Internal Medicine
Heart / Lung Transplant
Hematology / Oncology
ID Stewardship

Ambulatory Care
Bone Marrow Transplant
Solid Organ Transplant
Specialty Pharmacy
Left Ventricular Assist Device
Heart Failure

Critical Care
Cardiovascular ICU
Emergency Medicine
Medical ICU
Medical-Surgical ICU
Neonatal ICU
Neurosurgery ICU
Pediatric ICU
Pediatric Cardiac ICU
Surgery Trauma ICU
Burn ICU

General Pediatrics (required if no prior pediatric experience)
Neonatal ICU
Pediatric ICU
Pediatric Cardiac ICU
Pediatric Hematology / Oncology
Pediatric Surgery

  • ID Consult
  • Informatics
  • Investigational Drug Services
  • Medication Safety, Use & Policy
    Quality and Outcomes

Ambulatory Clinic
Residents will gain clinical experience by participating in a longitudinal ambulatory care clinic one ½ day per week throughout the two years. The clinic will be chosen based on resident interest and preceptor availability. This clinic typically rotates every 6 months to 1 year depending on rotation availability and resident interest.

Clinical Staffing Service
Residents will gain clinical experience providing service throughout the year as a clinical pharmacist. PGY1 and PGY2 residents staff an average of every third weekend in one of the inpatient pharmacies (Ashley River Tower, Children's Hospital, and University Hospital). Residents will be scheduled in a variety of central and decentralized roles so they gain experience providing a wide range of services. Activities include, but are not limited to order verification, sterile product verification, completing pharmacokinetic monitoring, providing therapeutic consults, attending emergency codes, and delivering patient education.

On Call
Each pharmacotherapy resident will participate in the Pharmacy On-Call Service. Call is a 24-7 in-house coverage beginning at 7 am to 7 am the next day. The resident will be on call approximately 2-3 times per month. The resident is responsible for ensuring all clinical consultations, clinical sign-outs, and pharmacokinetic consults are completed and logged into the RedCap database as well as update Epic iVent documentation. In addition, they will manage complex anticoagulation for cardiac devices and DTI patients, responding and attending Code Blues in the Main Hospital and at ART, and attending trauma codes in the ED. PGY2 residents will serve as the primary backup for PGY1 resident colleagues after they are deemed competent by their preceptors.

Research Project
Each resident will complete a major service or research project during the residency year. Pharmacotherapy residents will complete one project during their PGY1 year and one project during their PGY2 year. Project ideas will be generated by care team members of MUSC Health to address clinical and operational needs for Pharmacy Services and patients at MUSC Health. The resident will present the results of their project at a local, state, regional, or national meeting, and must write a manuscript suitable for publication describing the results of their project. Residents will be provided one working day each month during rotation hours to work on the project.

PGY1 pharmacotherapy residents will participate in a medication use evaluation to evaluate and implement measures to improve the quality of the medication-use process under the oversight of a clinical and drug information liaison. PGY2 pharmacotherapy residents will independently participate in a medication use evaluation during their quality rotation. Residents may present their findings at the Vizient Pharmacy Network resident poster session in December as well as at relevant P&T and/or subcommittees at MUSC Health.

Each resident will present at least one ACPE-accredited seminar during each year of the residency program. The goal of the seminar is to expand the resident's communication skills, presentation techniques, and knowledge in a topic of their choosing.

Required Certificate Programs

Academician Preparation Program
The MUSC College of Pharmacy offers a certificate to residents in the Charleston area who are interested in enhancing skills needed in an academic environment. Residents are assigned a full-time faculty member as a mentor for this program. Additional requirements for APP include providing 2 hours of didactic lectures, evaluating 5 student Grand Rounds presentations, facilitating 5 small group discussions and/or laboratory exercises, and serving as the primary preceptor for 2 students on APPE rotations.

Research Certificate Program
The MUSC College of Pharmacy also offers a research certificate program for residents, consisting of live sessions aimed at improving residents' ability to conduct, disseminate, and interpret research.

Residents and preceptors will use PharmAcademic to complete evaluations throughout the year for all learning experiences. The resident is expected to successfully complete and achieve 95% of the required outcomes according to ASHP Educational Outcomes, Goals and Objectives for PGY1/2 Pharmacotherapy Residencies as assessed by the RPD at the last quarterly evaluation of PGY2 year. Specifics regarding residency evaluation responsibilities can be found in the Residency Manual.

For each learning experience, the resident completes a summative self-evaluation of applicable RLS goals and objectives, an evaluation of the learning experience, and an evaluation of the preceptor. The preceptor completes an initial learning experience introduction, a midpoint evaluation, and a final evaluation that details the resident’s performance related to the identified learning objectives that correlate with the learning experience as well as any additional areas of pharmacy practice.

  • Resident Stipend: Assessed annually and communicated in the welcome letter
  • Leave:
    • PGY1 and PGY2 residents: 23 days of paid leave for sick time, vacation time, and holidays. Each PGY1 resident will also receive one paid time off day per month after orientation, except for the Clinical Generalist rotation (10 additional total days)
    • Administrative time is granted upon approval for professional leave for meetings or other duties as determined
    • Residents working on designated holidays will not take paid leave
    • Long term leave is available through a combination of paid leave and/or leave without pay, with a maximum of 8 weeks
  • Health Insurance: Medical and dental insurance are available through the MUSC Medical Center
  • Parking: Parking at MUSC Health is available for a monthly charge
  • Technology: Residents will be provided a laptop and a pager to use throughout the year
  • Travel: Each resident is given a stipend to assist in travel expenses for professional meetings as approved by the Director of Graduate Pharmacy Education

Due to the unique nature of the pharmacotherapy residency, the pharmacotherapy resident will have the opportunity to learn under preceptors from many of the various residency programs at MUSC Health. See PGY1 and specialty program pages for specific preceptor information.

  • Complete ASHP entering interests form and objective-based self-assessment during orientation month
  • Complete the ACLS curriculum
  • Complete all the required month-long rotation experiences to the satisfaction of the rotation preceptor and RPD: Acute Care, Ambulatory Care, Clinical Generalist, Critical Care, Drug Information, Management, Pediatrics, and Psychiatry
  • Complete all assigned evaluations in PharmAcademic
  • Complete initial and quarterly updates to the development plan
  • Complete end-of-year self-assessment and review with RPD
  • Attain an “achieved” on 95% of the RLS goals and objectives as assessed by the RPD on the last quarterly evaluation (June)
  • Complete all staffing requirements: PGY1 residents are required to work 32 hours per month and PGY2 residents are required to work 16 hours per month (including weekend on-call assignments)
  • Participate in the Pharmacy On-call Service for both Pediatric and Adult On-call
  • Prepare and present an ACPE-approved continuing education seminar each year
  • Complete a service or research project designed to improve the services of the Pharmacy ICCE each year and prepare a manuscript suitable for publication in a peer-reviewed biomedical journal for each project
  • Present the service or research project at an approved local, state, regional, or national meeting
  • Participate in a medication use evaluation during each year and provide a written document with methods, findings, and recommendations.
  • Complete the Academician Preparation Program in its entirety
  • Complete the Research Certificate Program in its entirety
  • Complete a disease-specific appendix of all disease states encountered during the residency
  • Residents may not have any NIs or be actively in failure to progress at the time of graduation
  • Document duty hours via PharmAcademic

The MUSC Heath Pharmacy Residency Program uses the PhORCAS Application System through ASHP. All application materials must be submitted through the applicant portal on ASHP’s website. The deadline for receipt of a complete application packet is January 3rd.

Completed applications include:

  • Letter of intent (uploaded with application)
  • Curriculum vitae (uploaded with application)
  • Three letters of reference completed by health professionals who can attest to the applicant’s practice abilities and aptitudes including their clinical problem solving, time management, and willingness to accept constructive criticism
    • 1. At least two letters must be from a clinical preceptor
  • Official transcripts of all professional pharmacy education
  • Class rank in a sealed envelope from the Dean's Office
  • List of Rotations completed as a separate addendum with description of activities including number of patients followed, activities, duties, projects, in-services, etc.
  • Complete the online submission form to provide a full list of rotations and accompany details for each rotation, located on the Application Information Page of the Pharmacy Residency Website.

The application, letter of intent, and curriculum vitae should be submitted via the PhORCAS applicant portal. References should be submitted via PhORCAS Reference Portal using the ASHP Reference Template directly from the authors no later than January 3rd.

Interviews will be offered to candidates based on the information submitted through PhORCAS. On site interviews will occur at the middle of January through end of February.