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Wegmans School of Pharmacy Now Hosts Five Residencies

October 17, 2018

With the addition of two new pharmacy residency partnerships with Rochester Regional Health and Highland Family Medicine/Highland Hospital through the University of Rochester Medical Center, the Wegmans School of Pharmacy now has five post-graduate pharmacy residencies.

Dean Christine Birnie (center) with the 2018 Wegmans School of Pharmacy residents.

The School also hosts residencies in partnership with Wegmans Pharmacy locally and Upstate Medical University and St. Joseph’s Hospital in Syracuse, New York.

Dr. Lisa Phillips, associate professor and chair of the Department of Pharmacy Practice and Administration, said the complexities of health care, from medication management to its delivery has made collaborative, team-based care essential.

“Pharmacists play a vital role in the evolution of team-based care and the evidence supports the benefits of pharmacists in these teams,” she said, noting that while this model has existed in hospitals and hospital-based ambulatory care clinic settings for years, it is expanding to other ambulatory care and community pharmacy settings. Through initiatives like the pharmacy residencies, the School of Pharmacy’s curriculum has evolved to meet these changes and prepare students to be practice-ready upon graduation.

“The offering of post graduate residency training is essential to assuring that we have leaders in the profession actively engaged in collaborative practice models to lead this innovation,” she said, adding that the pharmacy faculty who serve as Residency Program Directors (RPDs), along with their residents, are bringing teaching and mentoring to the clinical classroom, preparing future pharmacists for this evolution in health care. Residencies are completed after obtaining a Doctor of Pharmacy degree and are one or two years in length.

Phillips, who has spent the last eight years serving as the School of Pharmacy’s RPD for the post-graduate year two (PGY-2) residency with SUNY Upstate, said these programs provide residents with intensive training focused on the translation of evidence-based medicine to the care of patients in a collaborative environment. Residency training also focuses on preparing future leaders, academics, and researchers in the profession.  

“The expansion of our collaborative partnerships are essential to the School’s involvement in the evolving practice of pharmacy and our growing position as leaders of practice innovation,” she said. “The contributions the pharmacy residency program adds to Fisher are important for our continued growth, our success as a School, and to the advancement of the profession.”

This year’s residents include:

  • Patrick McCabe ’17 (Pharm.D., MBA), PGY-2 at Rochester Regional Health under the guidance of Dr. Alex DeLucenay;
  • Joy Snyder ’18 (Pharm.D.), PGY-1 at Wegmans under the guidance of Dr. Elizabeth Sutton-Burke;
  • Amy Fabian, PGY-2 at St. Joseph’s under the guidance of Dr. Lisa Avery;
  • Jenna Fancher, completing a PGY-2 at SUNY Upstate under the guidance of Phillips;
  • and Samantha Leistman ’16 (Pharm.D.), PGY-2 at Highland Family Medicine, under the guidance of Dr. Nabila Ahmed-Sarwar.

Leistman and McCabe both completed PGY-1 residencies and are now back at Fisher for a second year experience working as ambulatory care pharmacy residents.

“I felt like I had gained so much from my first year of residency training and I wanted the opportunity to continue this growth. It was important to me to go as far as I could with my clinical training to ensure I am working at the top of my license and prepared for any future career opportunities,” Leistman said. “I want to help move the profession of pharmacy forward, and I feel that residency provides the strong foundation that is necessary to serve as a leader within the pharmacy community.”

Both residents are focused on honing their skills in chronic disease state management, service development, and interdisciplinary teamwork. They are also able to provide direct care to patients who are being treated for medically complex issues.

“The residency is providing me with robust clinical and academic experiences that will expedite my growth as a pharmacist and educator,” McCabe said.

In addition to the clinical aspects of the experience, residents in Fisher’s program have the opportunity to complete a teaching and learning certificate through the School, giving them the tools and techniques needed to precept students at their clinical sites or serve as future faculty members.

“Precepting students and residents is one of the reasons that I sought out a PGY-2 program that was affiliated with a School of Pharmacy,” Leistman said. “I think precepting is so important for both the preceptor and the learner, and I’m excited that I have the opportunity to help develop future generations of pharmacists.”

For more information about the residency program, email Phillips at ephillips@sjfc.edu.