Backus, Hospital of Central Connecticut Launch Pharmacy Residency Programs

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In an effort to recruit, train and retain the best new pharmacy school graduates, The Hospital of Central Connecticut and Backus Hospital have launched Pharmacy Residency Programs.

Similar to physician residency training, a pharmacy residency program is a postgraduate training program in a defined area of pharmacy practice. Eligible pharmacy resident candidates must interview and participate in a “match” process through the National Matching Service for placement. And pharmacy residents, practicing as licensed pharmacists, work and give back to supporting patient care, while learning.

“At Backus, we decided to start our program with two pharmacy residents,” said Teresa Seo, Pharmacy Manager at Backus Hospital. “And we were delighted to have Shannon Kelley and Minh Do begin with us this summer as our very first class of Postgraduate Year 1 [PGY1] pharmacy residents.  We are also pleased to welcome Agnes Zajac as pharmacy residency program director to assist us in program design and structure, in readiness for our accreditation visit this Spring.”

The Hospital of Central Connecticut’s program currently has one resident,  Katarzyna (Kasia) Sasiela, a 2018 graduate of the University of Connecticut, but plans to expand to two residents next year.  All residency-related activities are overseen by the residency program director, Colleen Teevan.

“The adoption of a pharmacy resident program at HOCC is an important step in the provision of the finest medication management services for our patients,” said David Girourd, the Central Region director of pharmacy. “The effect of the residency program has had an immediate and tangible effect on patient care.”

Postgraduate Year 1 pharmacy residencies provide a well-rounded experience for licensed pharmacists, usually recent doctor of pharmacy graduates. Both the Backus and Hospital of Central Connecticut programs provide clinical and operational learning, through hands-on projects and activities, as well as rotational experiences in a variety of areas, such as:

  • Internal Medicine-Medication Management.
  • Critical Care.
  • Ambulatory Care.
  • Oncology.
  • Administration-Leadership.
  • Medication Safety.
  • Operational Staffing.
  • Infectious Diseases — Antimicrobial Stewardship.

Pharmacy residents must also meet American Society of Health-System Pharmacists residency requirements throughout the year, which include completion of quality improvement projects, presentations at ASHP Midyear and Eastern States Regional conferences on research, community outreach activities and preparation of monographs, as well as publication-worthy manuscripts.

For pharmacists who choose to pursue additional training after completion of a PGY1 residency, a postgraduate year 2 (PGY2) residency builds upon the broad-based competencies achieved during a first-year residency, usually with a focus in a particular practice area such as cardiology, critical care, infectious diseases, internal medicine, health-system administration, and other areas.

“We are thankful for the support of Backus Leadership for our Pharmacy Residency Program.” said Nick Tessier, Director of Pharmacy for Hartford HealthCare Eastern Region. “This is a great opportunity to promote the further development of medication expertise, while contributing back to our patients and community.”


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