The field of pharmacy is in a state of empowering redefinition: from the world of medication dispensing into the world of patient care. In virtually every arena of our hospital, in every new and newsworthy facility, you’ll find our pharmacists on the forefront of their evolving discipline.
At NYP, the Department of Pharmacy continually embraces visionary thinking, thoughtful management and new technology to maintain our distinction as a leader in clinical excellence. As colleagues and collaborators, we are valued for our expertise in drug therapy management. Pharmacists are assigned to specific units, which gives them the means to specialize and develop strong team relationships. On these units, we shine by utilizing our knowledge in pharmacotherapeutics to influence patient treatments and provide optimal care.
But the bar is raising; that’s why we hold regular town hall meetings and identify room for improvement. For those who seek a more varied experience, we offer career paths with movement between units and specialties.
Direct Patient Care
Our pharmacists achieve as part of a team, on the patient floors and immersed in daily care. For example, pharmacists serve in a clinical capacity in our Emergency Departments (ED) and are integrated into the ED team. At NYP, there’s a heightened push to integrate pharmacists everywhere. Our clinical pharmacy managers are strategically placed in internal medicine, ambulatory care, critical care, infectious diseases, pediatrics, oncology, nutrition support, solid organ transplant, psychiatry and more.
We also house a Drug Information Center and an Investigational Drug Service. And let’s not forget the Burn Unit and full host of ICUs (including neonatal, pediatric, cardiac, medical, surgical and neurological). These services span our five sites, plus numerous satellite pharmacies and facilities in the Ambulatory Care Network (ACN). Our satellite pharmacy stations are strategically placed to provide high-quality service throughout the hospital.
With over 450 staff members and more than 200 pharmacists, we comprise a formidable group. Our commitment to quality and adherence to compliance standards are evident by the service rendered. Our department is well respected and valued. Our leading-edge order entry system makes things faster, easier and safer. And this makes our pharmacists happier (our turnover and vacancy rates are well below local and national benchmarks).
As part of a world-renowned academic institution, our pharmacists enjoy regular opportunities to teach and participate in research. This work has been highlighted and awarded by hospital leadership. Numerous members of our Pharmacy team are recognized and honored every year for their tireless dedication to quality outcomes and patient safety. Our managers receive funding to attend a national conference annually.
Prerequisites for Pharmacy
At NYP, pharmacy technicians are more important than ever. Our technicians support licensed pharmacists in providing both medication and care to our patients. They dispense IV bags at a rate of 30 to 50 per hour. They assist with the careful preparation of medication under the guidance of pharmacists, in addition to shouldering other responsibilities. At NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, pharmacy technicians are empowered team members advocating for patient safety through stringent standards. They are constant innovators. In general, pharmacy technicians enter the field through an approved pharmacy training program.
Internships and Residencies:
Practice Residency: PGY-1
The Postgraduate Year 1 (PGY-1) pharmacy residency program at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital is an ASHP-accredited 12-month rotational program that begins in July. It is designed to provide pharmacy professionals with the knowledge and skills required to become leading clinicians in a dynamic healthcare field.
Specialty Residency: PGY-2
The pharmacy specialty residency programs at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital are designed to enhance experience within a selected clinical specialty. We currently offer three PGY-2 pharmacy residency positions tailored to the needs and interests of each resident through our extensive clinical practice programs including Critical Care, Infectious Diseases and Solid Organ Transplantation.
We welcome motivated pharmacy interns who are enthusiastic about learning in a fast-paced environment. All interns must be in their third year of graduate-level study, currently enrolled in an accredited school of pharmacy and posses a New York State Pharmacy Intern Permit. Pharmacy interns train full time for one month during the day shift. We do not offer summer-only positions; interns continue their schedule during the school year. Under the supervision of pharmacists, pharmacy interns enhance their experience compounding and dispensing pharmaceuticals for safe and appropriate patient use. Students have the opportunity to work and learn in a variety of specialties throughout our hospital.
We are also highly successful in transitioning our pharmacy interns into staff pharmacist positions. A large percentage of our graduating interns join us as new colleagues every year. To ensure a pipeline of quality interns, our department has established partnerships with various schools in the metro New York area, including St. John’s University and the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia. Students from all accredited schools of pharmacy are welcome to apply. We post pharmacy intern opportunities in the Spring and Fall.
Teaching and Development:
On the development front, we provide generous tuition reimbursement for individual study. In addition, we provide our own Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE) programs. This gives our department the ability to customize programs that are relevant to our staff and cover groundbreaking topics.
In addition, our department provides an extensive orientation and ongoing training program to assure our staff is fully capable of providing a vast array of services. All pharmacy colleagues are trained to the highest standards by our own experts.
Our Department of Pharmacy is affiliated with St. John’s University College of Pharmacy, University of the Sciences in Philadelphia, Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy at Rutgers University and Ohio State University College of Pharmacy. Through these relationships, various opportunities are available to pharmacy students looking to gain experience. Our pharmacists lead case-based laboratory discussions, observe students during rotations and even provide career mentorship.
Our pharmacists make full use of two of the world’s leading medical libraries: Columbia University Health Services Library and Cornell University Medical Library. These two resources are available to pharmacy staff from any computer workstation. All this, of course, supplements online references, including Lexi-Comp, Clinical Pharmacology and Micromedex, for researching time-sensitive clinical information.
Innovation is central to the expanding responsibilities of our profession. For example:
Our pharmacists rose to the occasion in the fallout of Superstorm Sandy. When pharmacy computer systems went down hospital-wide, our pharmacists sprang into action. No one wanted to miss a shift—or let down a single NYP patient. They slept overnight. They blended patient care with the painstaking, “back to basics” work of handwriting labels on pill bottles, IV bags and chemotherapy treatments. Nurses and physicians praised their dedication. In spite of the technological challenges, our pharmacists distributed all medications on time—and with smiles on their faces.
Awards and Recognition:
Vickie Powell, Pharmacy Director at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, was appointed to the ASHP (American Society of Health-system Pharmacists) at the national level for pharmacy practice.
Enrico Ligniti, NYP Pharmacy Manager, was elected to the board of directors of the NYSCHP (New York State Council of Health-system Pharmacists).
Doctors initially told Danion’s mother that there was no way to save him. But his mother pushed on and came to NYP, where they agreed to accept the case. His surgeon, Dr. Mark Souweidane says, “It was one of the largest tumors I’ve ever seen.”