PGY-2 Solid Organ Transplant Residency

The PGY2 Solid Organ Transplant Residency Program is designed to develop accountability; practice patterns; and expert knowledge, skills, attitudes, and abilities in each respective advanced area of solid organ transplant pharmacy practice. PGY2 solid organ transplant residents throughout the year will: acquire the needed knowledge for skillful problem solving of solid organ transplant related issues, refine their problem-solving strategies, strengthen their professional values and attitudes, and advance the growth of their clinical judgment. Specifically, this specialty residency is designed to train pharmacists to care for an organ transplant recipient. Training will be focused in immunology, infectious disease, primary care, and critical care, with opportunities to care for patients in the inpatient and outpatient setting.

Therefore, the solid organ transplant residency provides residents with opportunities to function independently as practitioners by conceptualizing and integrating accumulated experiences and knowledge and transforming both into improved medication therapy for patients.

The resident must have previously completed a PGY1 residency or have an equivalent level of experience in hospital pharmacy practice prior to entering this specialized residency program. The residency is designed to provide a diverse experience, while focusing on the needs of the individual resident. Residents may tailor elective rotations to meet their particular goals and career needs. Residents are provided with formal written evaluations following each monthly rotation in order to provide for an optimal experience. Residents and advisors/ RPD will complete a quarterly self-evaluation to assure compliance with self-determined goals and the ASHP Residency Learning System. Residents will rotate through adult inpatient and ambulatory experiences. Residents may elect to complete dedicated pediatric transplant learning experiences in the inpatient and/or outpatient setting.

PGY2 pharmacy residency programs build on Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) education and PGY1 pharmacy residency programs to contribute to the development of clinical pharmacists in advanced or specialized practice. PGY2 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 that improves medication therapy. Residents who successfully complete an accredited PGY2 pharmacy residency should possess competencies that qualify them for clinical pharmacist and/or faculty positions and position them to be eligible for attainment of board certification in the specialized practice area (when board certification for the practice area exists).

  • Develop competent specialized transplant clinical specialists with an understanding of rational drug therapy and the ability to utilize and expand their experience in clinical pharmacy practice, research, and education.
  • Provide a broad scope of in-depth transplant experiences, which will lead to an advanced level of knowledge and enhance the resident's ability to design, implement, provide, and improve clinical pharmacy services.
  • Develop future leaders in clinical transplant pharmacy practice and education.
  • Provide the resident an opportunity to participate in clinical and evaluative research in the solid organ transplant population.
  • Enhance and expand the resident's skills in the overall management of the complex, critically ill transplant recipient.

The PGY2 Solid Organ Transplant Residency at MUSC is a one-year post-graduate training program designed to develop essential knowledge and skills for practice as a solid organ transplant pharmacist. The residency program provides the flexibility to adapt to the resident’s specific learning needs and goals.

The training is provided through month-long clinical rotations and longitudinal experiences.

Orientation | 1 month (July)*
Inpatient Heart/Lung Transplant/LVAD/ Advanced Heart Failure | 1 month
Inpatient Abdominal Transplant Surgery | 2 months
Inpatient Cardiothoracic Surgery or Cardiovascular Intensive Care Unit | 1 month
Ambulatory Adult Transplant Clinic | 2 months

* July orientation month is modified for residents who completed PGY1 training at MUSC

5 to 6 months (depending on need for full orientation month). The resident may select any of the required rotations for additional months or other rotations per RPD discretion. Examples of elective rotations include:

  • Medical Intensive Care Unit
  • Medical/Surgical Intensive Care Unit
  • Internal Medicine
  • Transplant Infectious Diseases
  • Transplant Quality and Outcomes
  • Pediatric
    • Pediatric Transplant
    • Pediatric Cardiac ICU
    • Pediatric ICU

Specialty Pharmacy - Residents will gain experience providing care to transplant patients who receive medications from the MUSC integrated specialty pharmacy. PGY2 solid organ transplant residents will work for 8 hours each month in the MUSC Specialty pharmacy. Activities include, but are not limited to, prescription submission to insurance, prior authorization submissions, submitting appeals for insurance denials, peer to peer discussions with payors, writing letters of medical necessity, counseling patients on specialty medications, ensuring compliance with specialty regimens, ordering and reviewing labs for medication effectiveness, and other duties that involve obtaining affordable medications and monitoring specialty medications for transplant patients. Most patient care will involve hepatitis C medication procurement for patients who receive organs from hepatitis C positive donors.

On Call - Residents will participate in the Transplant Pharmacy On-Call service for weekend and holiday coverage. Residents will provide 24-hour availability of clinical pharmacy services related to transplant pharmacotherapy during their on-call assignments. Transplant pharmacy specialists will serve as the clinical back-up for the residents. PGY2 solid organ transplant residents will be expected to take call two weekends each month in addition to any assigned holidays

Research Project - Each resident will complete a major service or research project during the residency year. Project ideas will be generated by the transplant pharmacist group with assistance from the resident. Projects will address clinical and operational needs for Pharmacy Services and transplant patients at MUSC Health. The resident will present the results at a local, state, regional, or national meeting and will 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 their project.

Medication Use Evaluation (MUE) - Each resident will participate in a group medication use evaluation during the spring to evaluate and implement measures to improve the quality of the medication-use process in solid organ transplant patients. Residents will write a manuscript and will present the results at a transplant quality meeting and/or the Pharmacy and Therapeutics Committee at MUSC Health.

Seminar - Each resident will present at least one ACPE-accredited seminar during the residency program. The goal of the seminar is to expand the resident’s communication skills, presentation technique, and knowledge in a solid organ transplant topic of their choosing.

Teaching Experience - Each resident will develop a 1-hour presentation to be delivered to practitioners outside of the department of pharmacy. This may include Transplant Grand Rounds, Internal Medicine Grand Rounds, or Heart Failure Conference/Cardiology Fellows Conference. The purpose of this experience is to learn how to present a topic to an interdisciplinary audience. Each resident will be required to participate in the transplant/immunology elective at the MUSC College of Pharmacy. The resident will select a topic from the syllabus, prepare and teach a 2-hour didactic lecture to 2nd and 3rd year pharmacy students. The resident will be responsible for writing test questions for the students. Each resident will be required to coordinate a monthly in-service immunosuppression/transplant protocol review for medical students, interns, and residents on the transplant surgery service. Residents will participate in coordinating monthly group topic discussions for all learners on transplant rotations. These discussions will review core transplant topics in addition to other pertinent topics deemed necessary by the resident and/or preceptors. Residents will be responsible for coordinating a quarterly transplant journal club to review contemporary literature in transplant with preceptors, residents, and students.

Transplant Protocol - Each resident will participate in the development of at least one new transplant protocol. The resident will be required to work with an interdisciplinary team to develop this protocol. The final protocol will be presented to the transplant team at a quality meeting.

Academician Preparation Program
The MUSC College of Pharmacy offers an optional 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 lecture, developing one complex patient case, 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.

Each clinical preceptor will be responsible for the coordination of their own learning experience, and be able to modify accordingly with the assistance of the Residency Program Director (RPD) should the resident need remediation as far as residency goals are concerned. The residency preceptor will exhibit the characteristics and aptitude necessary for residency training including the mastery of the four preceptor roles fulfilled when teaching clinical problem solving (direct instruction, modeling, coaching and facilitation). The residency preceptor will guide and monitor the resident’s activity and service throughout the learning experience. The residency preceptor will provide ongoing formative and summative evaluations of the resident’s performance, with the goal of advancing the resident’s competency on the specific goals assigned to the experience. For preceptors who did not meet the ASHP requirements to be a PGY2 solid organ transplant preceptor, the preceptor will participate in the preceptor-in-training development program with a solid organ transplant preceptor as their mentor/advisor. Prior to becoming a full preceptor for the PGY2 solid organ transplant residency, a preceptor-in-training must have the preceptor development plan signed by the PGY2 solid organ transplant RPD attesting to the preceptor meeting the qualifications to be a PGY2 solid organ transplant preceptor.

  • Understand the resident’s responsibilities to the residency experience and to ongoing activities such as projects, lectures, student discussions, manuscript preparation.
  • Develop and maintain goals and objectives for the specific residency teaching learning experience(s).
  • Review the resident’s development plan and resident’s previous performance. Modify the learning experience accordingly.
  • Orient the resident to the rotation’s expectations and monitor/evaluate/critique the resident’s performance during the experience.
  • Provide the resident with both a verbal and written midpoint and final evaluation; complete the final summary PharmAcademic evaluation by month’s end as outlined in the residency manual. Preceptors will be held accountable to completing PharmAcademic evaluations in a timely manner through their annual performance evaluations for the medical center.
  • Advise the RPD of any appropriate interventions that may be needed relevant to the resident’s performance.
  • Actively participate in an annual feedback session in which preceptors and the RPD consider overall program changes based on evaluations, observations, and direct resident feedback and surveys.

Holly Meadows, Pharm.D., BCPS
Clinical Pharmacy Specialist/Transplant
Practice/Research: Transplant

Neha Patel, Pharm.D., BCPS
Clinical Pharmacy Specialist/Transplant
Practice/Research: Transplant

Jackie Hawn, Pharm.D, BCCCP
Clinical Pharmacy Specialist/CTICU
Practice/Research: Cardiothoracic Surgery

Carolyn Magee Bell, Pharm.D., BCCCP
Clinical Pharmacy Specialist/MSICU
Practice/Research: Critical Care

Nicole Pilch, Pharm.D., MSCR, BCPS
Quality and Compliance Director, Transplant
Practice/Research: Transplant

Felicia Bartlett, Pharm.D.
Clinical Pharmacy Specialist/Transplant
Practice/Research: Transplant

Caroline Perez, Pharm.D., BCPS
Clinical Pharmacy Specialist/Transplant
Practice/Research: Transplant

Joe Mazur, Pharm.D., BCPS
Clinical Pharmacy Specialist/MICU
Practice/Research: Critical Care

David Taber, Pharm.D., MS, BCPS
Clinical Research
Practice/Research: Transplant

Barbara Wiggins, Pharm.D., BCPS, BCCCP
Clinical Pharmacy Specialist/CVICU
Practice/Research: Cardiology

The Residency Advisor (appointment by the RPD) will be responsible for the supervision, guidance and on-going evaluation of the resident’s progress throughout the residency, as well as serve in an informal professional mentoring role (examples include preparation for future career planning roles, work-life balance, residency experiences, and conflict-resolution).

The residents' role is that of a student, novice practitioner, and emerging clinician. The resident is to participate in ongoing clinical services with the assistance of the residency preceptor and develop their skill set into a competent practitioner. The resident must accept and apply constructive criticism, in addition to performing honest and thoughtful self-evaluations on their performance. In order to promote an effective and productive residency experience, the relationship between a resident and rotation preceptor must be highly communicative, and a meaningful dialogue must be achieved. Specifically, the resident will:

  • Sign off on the learning experience orientation form on the first day of each new clinical rotation.
  • Complete PharmAcademic evaluations in a timely manner – outlined in the current MUSC residency manual. This involves project work, MUE work, seminar preparation, and any other lecture or inservice/presentation that will require preceptor feedback. All evaluations should be completed by the last day of the learning experience, but no later than 7 days after the completion of the learning experience. Paid time off, outside of unplanned emergencies/sickness, will not be approved unless there are no overdue PharmAcademic evaluations.
  • Understand the preceptor’s expectations for daily activities, services provided and preceptor contact.
  • Maintain the disease-state appendix for review at each quarterly discussion with the advisor and/or RPD.
  • Participate in pharmacy activities (eg. rounds, patient care conferences, lectures, departmental meetings, clinical staff meetings, seminars, and Grand Rounds) in accordance to the current MUSC residency manual.
  • As outlined by the clinical preceptor, provide a detailed account of activities as they relate to the goals and objectives of the learning experience.
  • Maintain active communication with the preceptor, advisor and/or RPD concerning any planned off-service activities (eg. meetings, seminars, projects, staffing, on-call commitments) that the resident will be participating in during the rotation.

    These expectations will be discussed with the resident during the orientation month.

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 required objectives according to ASHP Educational Outcomes, Goals and Objectives for PGY2 Solid Organ Transplant Residency as assessed by the RPD at the last quarterly evaluation. Specifics regarding residency evaluation responsibilities can be found in the Residency Manual. There can be no “needs improvements” on any goals or objectives for the residency year in order to successfully graduate from the program. The resident will first observe, learn, act, and then master a particular activity, which will deem them having achieved that objective.

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.

Qualified applicants must have completed a PGY1 residency or receive documentation of equivalent experience through ASHP. The MUSC 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 December 31.

Completed applications include:

  • Letter of intent (uploaded with application)
  • Curriculum vitae (uploaded with application)
  • Three references completed by healthcare professionals in PhORCAS who can attest to the applicant’s practice abilities and aptitudes
    • At least one reference must be from an immediate supervisor
    • At least one letter must be from a clinical preceptor
  • Official transcripts of all professional pharmacy education

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 December 31. Interviews will be offered to candidates based on the information submitted through PhORCAS.

Approximately 3 to 6 candidates will be interviewed per available position. On site interviews will occur at the end of January through the beginning of March. Internal candidates may apply for early commitment. If early commitment is appropriate, the candidate will be notified prior to attending the Midyear Clinical Meeting. Internal candidates may also be referred to the regular match process at the discretion of the RPD or based upon early commitment decision.

  • All PGY2 residents have their PGY1 residency certificate on file.
  • Residents will complete or maintain ACLS certification and participate in medical emergencies.
  • Attain an "achieved" on 95% of the RLS objectives as assessed by the RPD on the last quarterly evaluation (June).
  • No "needs improvements" may be present upon graduation of the program.
  • Complete all of the required month-long rotation experiences to the satisfaction of the rotation preceptor and RPD: orientation, ambulatory care (2 months), transplant surgery (2 months), heart/lung transplant/ VAD/advanced heart failure, CVICU or CT surgery
  • Complete all assigned evaluations in PharmAcademic
  • Complete quarterly and end-of-year self-assessment (development plan) and review with RPD.
  • Participate in medication use evaluation(s). Provide a written document with methods, findings, and recommendations.
  • Complete a service or research project designed to improve the services of the Pharmacy ICCE. Prepare a manuscript suitable for publication in a peer-reviewed biomedical journal. Editorial assistance by the preceptor is required.
  • Present the research project at an approved local, national, regional or state meeting.
  • Complete disease-specific appendix for the PGY2 solid organ transplant residency.
  • Prepare and present an ACPE-approved continuing education seminar.
  • Prepare and present a didactic lecture to College of Pharmacy students in the transplant/ immunology elective or other course as approved by the RPD.
  • Prepare and present a 1-hour lecture for presentation outside of the pharmacy department, which may include Transplant Grand Rounds, Internal Medicine Grand Rounds, Heart Failure Noon Conference, or other equivalent experience.
  • Prepare a transplant protocol in collaboration with other members of the transplant team.
  • Complete all specialty staffing requirements as assigned
  • Complete all Transplant Pharmacy On-call Service requirements as assigned.
  • Evaluate 4 Grand Rounds presentations throughout the year.