Pharmacy Residency Program
Holyoke Health Center (HHC) is a federally qualified, non-profit community health center (FQHC), in Holyoke, MA with a second site in Chicopee, MA. The HHC medical home provides the following services:
- Adult and pediatric primary medical, and dental services
- Community and clinical pharmacy services
- Same-day care
- Health insurance outreach, access and enrollment services
- Diabetes education
- Pediatric asthma
- Education and support services
- Healthy weight, chronic disease self-management
- HIV/AIDS counseling and testing and substance abuse services
- Hep C counseling and treatment
Our 300 employees include 30 full time Medical and Dental providers, 30 Nurses, 50 bilingual Medical and Dental Assistants, Case Managers, Outreach Workers, Financial Counselors, and more who serve over 12,000 patients each year, resulting in 46,000 medical visits per year. The pharmacies are staffed with 14 full-time Pharmacists, 3 Pharmacy Residents, 1 Adjunct Pharmacy Professor, 11 Certified Technicians, 8 Clerks and 2 Community Health Workers. HHC's mission is to improve the health of our patients through affordable, quality health care and comprehensive community-based programs to create a healthy community.
Registered with the Massachusetts Department of Public Health as a retail pharmacy, HHC provides pharmacy services to all patients in the community; 340B access for patients with HHC primary care and retail access for patients with primary care services outside of the HHC medical home. The on-site community pharmacy, fills approximately 6,000 prescriptions per week, is owned and operated by HHC and is an integral part of all services offered in the HHC medical home. The pharmacies accept many insurances including Masshealth, MCOs, Medicare, CCA, MedicareD and Health Safety Net. There are managed care services available within the pharmacy in order to assist patients with their insurance needs.
Pharmacists are active in several key health center committees including but not limited to: Pharmacy and Therapeutics (P&T), Continuous Quality Improvement (CQI), and Safety Committees. The pharmacy department is an integral component of all health center activities with 2 pharmacists serving on each medical team. Patients, regardless of ability to pay, are appropriately referred and offered culturally competent, quality pharmacy care.
Pharmacist Delivered Clinical Pharmacy Services:
Providing proper care for a large high risk, low-income, predominantly Latino patient population carries many special challenges. HHC has strategically designed pharmacy and Medication Therapy Management (MTM) programs to address the needs of this population. HHC pharmacists have been providing culturally competent Clinical Pharmacy Services (CPS) to high risk patients in its MTM clinics for many years. The average high risk HHC patient seen in MTM has an average of 9 chronic medical conditions, receives care from at least 4 different health care providers, and requires a total of 15 maintenance medications (three of which are high risk medications as defined by ISMP). Also, 74% of this population is Spanish speaking and approximately 10% are illiterate. Pharmacy support staff, community health workers, and pharmacy students assist the clinical pharmacist in translation and providing comprehensive CPS. HHC is fully committed to improving the safety and health outcomes of all patients.
In addition to MTM services, our clinical pharmacists participate on clinical teams including diabetes, pediatric asthma, hypertension, transition of care and Hepatitis C. Pharmacy staff members ensure that the administration and clinical staff are aware of medication related regulatory compliance requirements.
HHC has been a member of Patient Safety and Clinical Pharmacy Services Collaborative (PSPC) for the past six years, which has been recognized by the United States Health Resource and Services Administration (HRSA) as a leading practice and has received the CPS Improvement Award, the Health Outcomes Management Award, the Life Saving Patient Safety Award and the PSPC Performance Award. For the past 4 years, HHC has participated as one of the ten national Peer-to-Peer (P2P) sites recognized by the Pharmacy Support Service Center (PSSC); and organization established by HRSA's Office of Pharmacy Affairs (OPA) and the American Pharmacy Association (APhA). Also, HHC pharmacy has collaborated with Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS) for the past three years and has recently been recognized as a leading practice site. HHC offers superior services in each of the four cornerstone areas of practice: access to affordable medications, efficient business operations, quality assurance programming and outcome driven pharmaceutical care. In 2015, HHC's MTM and Medbox programs were recognized by HRSA as a best practice site. Recently, the pharmacy achieved accreditation through the Joint Commission.Opportunity to document, analyze, share and spread the HHC model throughout Massachusetts and across the nation has inspired us to continually refine and evaluate our work. HHC will continue to seek out new approaches to the provision of excellent health care and improved safety for our patients.
PGY1 Community Residency Program:
HHC's pharmacy practice post-graduate training program is an ASHP accredited, 53-week program designed to prepare the resident to become a confident member of the health care team. This unique setting allows the resident to practice within a multidisciplinary team. The resident will be providing direct patient care involving disease states, but not limited to, diabetes, hypertension, dyslipidemia and HIV in our MTM clinic. The resident will identify patients that would benefit from adherence packaging and refer these patients to HHC's Medbox program. The resident will also serve as a co-preceptor to pharmacy students completing advanced pharmacy practice experience (APPE) ambulatory care and community rotations. HHC is affiliated with Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences (MCPHS)- Worcester and Boston, the University of Connecticut School of Pharmacy (UCONN), the University of Rhode Island (URI), Albany College of Pharmacy, Larkin University and Regis University School of Pharmacy. Depending upon the interest of the resident, didactic teaching opportunities can be arranged. Residents work closely with our providers via opportunities to rotate in family medicine, adult medicine, same day care, and more. The pharmacy resident also assists nursing staff as needed, including assisting nurse care managers in providing medication reconciliation in high-risk, high-cost, or recently discharged patients. The resident also assists providers by performing a comprehensive medication reconciliation before the patient is seen at his/her hospital discharge visit. Additionally, the resident will also have an outpatient-staffing component at HHC's retail pharmacy. Our residency program provides a personalized learning experience while providing a strong clinical foundation.
Residency Teaching Seminar (RTS) and Certificate Program:
RTS is a program supported by MCPHS University that is offered to all pharmacy practice residents (PGY1/PGY2) and pharmacy fellows practicing in Massachusetts. The program consists of 9 two-hour seminars offered from September through May of each academic year. The goal of RTS is to expose the resident to educational theory and educational practice models that can be applied to the resident's role as teacher with patients, students, co-workers and even managers. This unique seminar allows for interactions with residents from all across the state. Upon completion of this program, the resident will be awarded a teaching certificate.
American Pharmacists Association (APhA) Delivering MTM Services Certificate Program:
Depending upon availability, the resident will be afforded the opportunity to attend the APhA Delivering Medication Therapy Management Services program. This is an innovative and interactive program that explores the pharmacist's role in providing MTM. The certificate training program will enhance the resident's clinical expertise in evaluating complicated medication regimens, identifying medication-related problems, and making recommendations to patients, caregivers, and health care professionals. A certificate will be awarded upon completion of this program.
Residency Core Outcomes:
The resident must complete the following in order to receive a Certificate of Completion, within the 53 week residency experience:
- Be a candidate for spring graduation or have already obtained a PharmD from an ACPE accredited school of pharmacy
- Attain licensure as a registered pharmacist in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts by August 1st
- Achieve all established program-specific learning objectives
- Complete required expectations in operational, clinical and managerial responsibilities
- Participate in provided trainings and development opportunities in Practice Management
- Design, conduct, evaluate and disseminate research results of a longitudinal outcomes-based project in both poster presentation and written manuscript form
- Partake in the delivery of drug information, including the design and presentation of at least one 50-minute ACPE-accredited continuing education seminar to pharmacists/associates
- Submit at least one publication on a community/ambulatory care-related topic
- Prepare and maintain, seasonally, a P&T newsletter focused on drug-related information and policies or assigned health care topics
- Mentor and evaluate designated PharmD candidates
- Complete required self-evaluations as well as evaluations of preceptors and learning experiences
- Participate in required Local and National Professional Pharmacy meetings
Resident's time will be devoted to:
- Directing patient care services in outpatient settings
- Providing medication therapy management
- Drug information
- Research including data collection
- Teaching and co-precepting students
- Patient and provider education
- Committee and project participation
Direct Patient Care Services:
Throughout the year, the resident will be an integral member of a multidisciplinary patient care team providing patient-specific pharmaceutical care services and developing care plans. The resident will enhance their skills in:
- Developing individualized pharmacotherapeutic plans
- Monitoring drug therapy and enhancing patient outcomes
- Providing therapeutic recommendations
- Provide drug information and education to health care providers
- Counseling and educating patients on medication use
- Assessing and practicing evidence based medicine
- Promoting cost-effective pharmacy practice
Throughout the year the resident will:
- Provide drug information to physicians, nurses, pharmacists and allied health professionals
- Enhance their drug information retrieval skills using a variety of resources
- Participate in medication use reviews and adverse drug event reporting
The resident will work on a research project throughout the year that will provide experience in:
- Organizing, planning and conducting research-related tasks
- Managing data for patient interventions and outcomes
- Evaluating and completing a project
- Submitting research results for publication in a peer-reviewed journal and/or to present the results as a poster or platform presentation at a national meeting
The resident will:
- Participate in provider education, pharmacy lectures and case conferences
- Be afforded didactic teaching responsibilities at affiliated colleges of pharmacy
- Be afforded experiential teaching responsibilities by co-precepting pharmacy students on clinical rotations
- Receive a teaching certificate upon completion of the Residency Teaching Seminar
- Receive an MTM certificate upon completion of an accredited MTM certificate program.
At a minimum, the resident will be responsible for staffing approximately 40 hours per month. The amount of extra service that the resident will do depends largely on the current work flow environment and available opportunities.
Residents will have the opportunity to attend professional conferences.
HHC is committed to developing and maintaining the best post-graduate training program. Changes may be made to the curriculum and other aspects of this program to assure the highest quality training.
Find out what our past residents are doing now - CLICK HERE!
Chief Pharmacy Officer for Holyoke Health Center:
- Lori Lewicki, RPh - Director of Holyoke Health Center Pharmacy
- Email: email@example.com
Residency Program Coordinator:
- Marisa Piers-Gamble, PharmD, BCACP
- Lori Lewicki, RPh, RPD
- Marisa Piers-Gamble, PharmD, BCACP, Clinical Coordinator
- Aimee Dawson, PharmD, Assistant Professor of Pharmacy Practice, MCPHS University
- Jerril Varghese, PharmD, Clinical Pharmacist
- Alicia Poole, PharmD
- Alyssa Puia, PharmD, Clinical Pharmacist, preceptor-in-training
- Ashley Ginda, PharmD, Clinical Pharmacist, preceptor-in-training
- Alexis Dellogono, PharmD, Clinical Pharmacist, preceptor-in-training
Pay and Benefits:
- Period of Appointment: 53 weeks; Late June to Early July
- Estimated PGY1 Stipend: $47,000
- Benefits: Approximately 10 days vacation, 3 days of sick leave, 11 federal holidays as well as authorized absence (leave with pay) to attend selected professional meetings. Health and dental insurance is included. Parking is provided.
Number of Positions:
Three residency positions
All materials must be submitted to PhORCAS- Pharmacy Online Residency Centralized Application Service.
- Letter of Intent
- Curriculum Vitae
- Pharmacy School Transcript
- 3 letters of reference
Please refer to PhORCAS for application deadline.