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Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center


PGY1 Pharmacy Practice Residency Program

Program Overview

The Ralph H. Johnson VAMC offers a 12-month PGY1 pharmacy practice residency. The goal of the residency is to develop the resident's skills and competency in providing patient-centered care as part of multi-disciplinary primary care, specialty care, and inpatient teams. With nine core rotations and two electives, the resident is able to tailor the residency program to his/her interest area(s). We develop pharmacist clinicians for patient care positions, adjunct faculty or faculty positions, or PGY2 training. Research and continuing educational activities are included in the residency.

Chief of Pharmacy: Sharon Castle, Pharm.D., BCPS
Program Director: Bonnie Balderose, Pharm.D., MHA 

Residency Program Specifics

  • Duration: 12 months
  • Number of Positions: 5
  • Application Deadline: December 31
  • Starting Date: July 1
  • Estimated Stipend: $41,166

Basic Requirements

  • Doctor of Pharmacy Degree (Pharm.D.) from an ACPE-Accredited College of Pharmacy
  • Licensure may be through any U.S. State Board of Pharmacy
  • U.S. citizenship
  • Application, Curriculum Vitae, Academic Transcripts, Letter of Intent, and Three Letters of Reference
  • On-site interview

Following orientation in July, the residency is made up of core experiences and elective experiences.

Core Experiences: 9 months - all PGY1 residents

  • Orientation
  • Primary Care
  • Specialty 1 & Specialty 2 (Endocrinology + Rheumatology or Anemia or Infectious Disease or Pain Clinic/Neurology)
  • Inpatient Medicine
  • Critical Care
  • Geriatrics
  • P&T Committee/Administration
  • CV Risk Reduction Clinic
  • Mental Health
  • Elective

Longitudinal Experiences: 

  • Drug Information/Formulary Management
  • Pharmacy Management
  • Research Project
  • Staffing (16-20 hrs/month, paid) 

Elective Experiences: 2 months

During these months, the resident tailors the residency to his/her interest area(s).

Inpatient-based electives:

  • Geriatrics II
  • Inpatient Adult Medicine II
  • Critical Care II
  • Chemotherapy Patient Safety Program
  • Total Parenteral Nutrition (TPN)

Ambulatory Care-based electives:

  • Primary Care Clinic
  • Primary Care Community-based Clinic
  • Cardiovascular Risk Reduction Clinic
  • Specialty Clinics*
    • Geriatrics Clinic
    • Anemia Clinic
    • Infectious Diseases/HIV Clinic
    • Endocrinology Clinic & DM Teaching Class
    • Rheumatology Clinic
    • Neurology Clinic
    • Cardiology Clinic
    • Pain Clinic
    • Transplant Clinic

*Specialty clinics generally meet on certain days of the week, therefore, 2-3 specialty clinics are often combined into a month-long rotation.

Requirements to receive Residency Certificate

  • Meet all ASHP PGY1 Residency Requirements, including achieving all six of the required outcomes.
  • Satisfactory completion of all rotational experiences.
  • Completion of a service or research project with a manuscript acceptable for publication or presentation.
  • The residency project will be presented formally at the Southeastern Residency Conference.
  • Active participation in the successful completion of a Medication Use Evaluation.
  • Presentation of a Seminar at SC College of Pharmacy, MUSC Campus, or VA Medical Center.
  • Compliance with all institutional and departmental policies.
  • Participation in the PharmD student teaching activities of the department.
  • Completion of staffing commitment of 16-20 hours per month.
  • Active participation and presentation in monthly topic/case discussion series.
  • Active participation and presentation in Journal Club.
  • Active participation in the recruitment efforts of the department.


Residents have the opportunity to participate in the teaching certificate program at the South Carolina College of Pharmacy, MUSC Campus. The college will award a "certificate of academic preparation" at completion of the program.

  • Precepting students
  • Preparing a teaching portfolio
  • Active Learning Techniques
  • Interviewing for an academic position
  • Small group facilitation
  • Writing multiple choice questions
  • Constructing and evaluating an exam
  • Assessment techniques and constructing assessment/evaluation tools
  • Designing a course


  • Four hours vacation and sick leave earned per pay period (every two weeks)
  • Paid administrative leave for educational meetings
  • Pharmacist salary for staffing hours (separate from residency stipend)
  • Health and Life insurance available
  • Free parking