PGY1 Pharmacy Residency
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Interested candidates or questions:
Jena Torpin, PharmD, BCPS
Residency Program Director

Mercy Hospital PGY1 Pharmacy Residency Manual

PGY1 Pharmacy Residency

Our Post Graduate Year 1 (PGY1) pharmacy residency program builds on PharmD education and outcomes to contribute to the development of a clinical pharmacist responsible for medication-related care of patients with a wide range of conditions, eligible for board certification and eligible for postgraduate year two (PGY2) pharmacy residency training.


  • We are committed to helping residents gain clinical and leadership skills and enhance professional growth.
  • At the completion of the residency, residents will be able to effectively provide patient care in multiple settings, and lead medication improvement initiatives in a community-based institutional setting.
  • The residency provides residents with the ability to enhance their professional ethic, gain and apply pharmacy and patient care knowledge, demonstrate effective communications skills, develop independent learning proficiency, and grow leadership and precepting skills.


Mercy’s PGY-1 Residency assists residents in achieving skills and knowledge to enhance competency as a pharmacy practitioner and leader. All residents are expected to:

  • Independently provide quality direct patient care in multiple practice settings
  • Demonstrate effective written and verbal communication skills
  • Develop a professional ethic consistent with the Allina Health mission and values
  • Acquire skills to evaluate evidence-based literature to promote safe, effective, and cost appropriate care
  • Design quality improvement initiatives to improve the medication use and pharmacy processes
  • Develop independent learning skills for continual professional and leadership development

Educational opportunities

  • Major capstone project
  • Medication Utilization Evaluations
  • Presentation opportunities of projects as a poster at the ASHP Midyear Clinical Meeting and pharmacy and therapeutics committee (P&T) and as a PowerPoint presentation at the North Star Pharmacy Residents Conference
  • ACLS Certification and code response 
  • Co-precepting of APPE and IPPE students
  • In-services to other health care professionals
  • Participation in P&T
  • Meeting attendance at several meetings including MSHP Midyear, ASHP Midyear, MSHP Annual Conference, and the North Star Pharmacy Residents Conference
  • Teaching certificate program

There will also be opportunities for presentations and projects during the residents' various rotations.


  • Residents will staff a combination of weekend and evening shifts on both campuses to meet ASHP staffing requirements
  • Residents can expect to staff approximately three out of eight weekends and one evening shift per month
  • Each resident will work at least three of six observed holidays
  • Residents will staff medication history, central pharmacy, and in decentralized practice areas
  • Staffing preceptors will be assigned to each resident and will be available throughout the year to provide support and feedback

Clinical rotations


The purpose of the 5-6 week required orientation rotation is to familiarize the new residents with the responsibilities of the residents within Mercy Hospital’s PGY1 residency program. This includes orienting to the residency manual, an overview of their individual residency schedules, and becoming acquainted with the responsibilities of a clinical pharmacist to fulfill all residency requirements. During this rotation, the resident will shadow pharmacists and technicians and receive formal and informal training in order to prove competency on department and system policies and procedures. In addition, the residents will complete the Initial Assessment of Competency, online learning programs and the Orientation Checklist.


The purpose of the rotation is to provide an opportunity for the resident to provide pharmacist patient care to critically ill patients at Mercy & Unity Campuses. The resident will design, recommend, monitor, and evaluate patient-specific therapeutic regimens for selected critically ill patients. The patient population includes a mix of medical and surgical ICU patients.

Internal Medicine (IM) is a required, five to six week learning experience at Mercy Hospital (on both Mercy and Unity campuses). Pharmacy residents will participate, when assigned, to direct patient care activities as well as interdisciplinary instructional activities (in-services). Pharmacy residents will not participate in formal patient care rounds however will have the opportunity to collaborate with physicians and other health care providers during the rotation. The IM rotation patient census will be determined by the preceptor and will typically involve 10-15 patients/day. The preceptor will round with the resident daily to assess ongoing patient care needs.

Medication Safety is a required, 12-month, longitudinal learning experience.  This rotation is aimed at providing the resident with a solid foundation and equipping them with the knowledge and tools to identify, develop, and implement safe medication practices, as these are responsibilities of every pharmacist.  The resident will gain knowledge through reading medication safety literature, evaluating medication error data, assessing compliance with technology related safety features and policies, and participate in medication safety committee meetings and discussions.  The knowledge will then be applied to develop and implement initiatives to improve the medication use system. 

Patient education is a required, yearlong, longitudinal experience at Mercy Hospital, Unity Campus. The purpose of the rotation is for the residents to deliver education to patients admitted in Unity's inpatient substance abuse unit. Substance abuse group education will allow residents to lead a group discussion using fun materials to educate inpatients about pharmacy topics. The resident will also answer specific questions as they arise. The resident leading group will take attendance and document each patient's involvement in group in the electronic health record.

The precepting rotation is designed to give the resident hands-on precepting and teaching experience by coordinating two, one-week Introductory Pharmacy Practice Experience (IPPE) rotations for University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy students.  This experience will help residents develop skills to be an effective preceptor by allowing them to coordinate student schedules, develop topic discussions, and demonstrate thorough literature evaluation. The resident engages in developing the IPPE students’ experience with guidelines provided by the college of pharmacy. The resident will closely collaborate with the pharmacy student coordinator to develop the first IPPE rotation. During the second IPPE rotation, the resident will be the student's main contact with the student coordinator available as a resource.

The purpose of the Pharmacy Practice Management rotation is to enhance the resident's understanding of the health system organization and the role of pharmacy in meeting the goals of the organization.  The resident will gain knowledge and skills in the management of the medication use process, clinical programs, personnel, and financial operations. The resident will be involved in administrative activities and projects throughout the course of the rotation.  The resident will be expected to develop independent problem-solving skills related to assessing the impact of pharmacy services on the medication use process and developing and implementing recommendations for improvement.

The longitudinal staffing rotation is a required year-long experience designed to give the residents exposure to a variety of staffing locations throughout Mercy Hospital, Mercy and Unity Campuses. This includes experiences staffing in the central pharmacy, medication history and decentral/clinical areas. Residents will staff approximately three of every eight weekends and one weekday evening per month. Residents will also staff three holidays during the residency year on both Mercy and Unity campuses. Residents will be responsible for safe and effective medication use for all patients on their assigned care area. Routine responsibilities will include: order verification, product management/checking, design/implementation of therapeutic treatment plans with providers including anticoagulation and pharmacokinetics, antimicrobial stewardship, assessing for therapeutic duplication, and duties specific to the staffed care area.

The System Formulary learning experience is a required rotation for all PGY1 Pharmacy Residency Programs in Allina Health. The purpose of the learning experience is for the resident to coordinate the activities of a quality improvement change for the Allina Health System Formulary Committee based on ASHP Principles of a Sound Formulary System assessment of efficacy, safety, use, cost/reimbursement as requested. The learning experience allows for 1 week concentrated on projects and time with the System Formulary Program Manager at the project site as directed. The learning experience will consist of focused discussions about literature interpretation and assessment, creation of at least one written in-depth drug monograph or drug class review and presentation of that work to the System Formulary Committee and appropriate committees.

This longitudinal rotation pertains to the formal residency capstone project.  The resident's project will ultimately be of benefit to optimizing pharmaceutical patient care at the institution or within the Allina Health System.  This learning experience will take place across both Mercy and Unity campuses.  The resident will present their project at a formal pharmacy conference in the spring of each year.  The project must be approved by the pharmacy management team prior to implementation.

The residency program director (RPD) will oversee all projects.  Each project will have a supporting preceptor depending on the project's content.  The resident will select a project and preceptor within 5 months of starting the residency.  Additionally, depending on the project, it may be appropriate to have a project team formed by the resident or primary preceptor.

Activities may include acquiring IRB approval.

Outcomes will be added based on nature of the resident project.

Selective required

The purpose of cardiology PGY-1 rotation is to assist the resident in becoming proficient in cardiovascular pharmacotherapy.  At the conclusion of the rotation, the resident should be able to demonstrate the ability to identify patient specific problems in cardiovascular patients and utilize clinical therapeutic knowledge to resolve medication therapy problems. The aim is that the resident will be competent to successfully cover the cardiology units as the decentralized pharmacist by the end of the rotation. 

The Emergency Medicine rotation is a supervised clinical pharmacy experience in an emergency care setting.  Most of the resident time will be spent in direct interaction with the ED pharmacist. The remaining time will be spent shadowing other disciplines, attending meetings, answering drug information questions, or completing projects. Residents can expect to interact with all members of the healthcare team including physicians, physician assistants, nurses, respiratory therapists, social workers, ED technicians, and spiritual care providers. Common disease states in which the resident will be expected to gain proficiency through direct patient care experience include, but are not limited to stroke, myocardial infarction, cardiac arrest, various cardiac arrhythmias, trauma, toxicology, rapid sequence intubation, glycemic emergencies, and a myriad of infectious diseases.

Infectious Disease (ID) is a selective required, four week learning experience at Mercy Campus (3 weeks) and Abbott Northwestern Hospital (1 week). The rotation will provide an opportunity for the resident to provide patient care to selected infectious disease patients at the two sites. Pharmacy residents will be involved in direct patient care activities and actively participate in daily ID rounds with Infectious Disease physicians and pharmacists. The resident will design, recommend, monitor and evaluate patient-specific therapeutic regimens for patients with infectious disease team consults. Typically the ID team will be responsible for the care of approximately 5-15 patients daily.

The Mental Health rotation is a selective required 4 to 5-week learning experience at Mercy Hospital-Unity Campus. Residents will have the opportunity to provide pharmaceutical care for patients admitted to the Mental Health, Substance Abuse, and Geriatric Psych units. They will collaborate with physicians and nurses and will participate in formal rounds as well. Typical responsibilities will include medication therapy review, therapeutic drug monitoring, formal pharmacy consults as ordered by the physician, reconciling home medications as needed, providing drug information to staff and patients, and presenting staff education.


The AHCI Mercy Campus Oncology Infusion Elective is a dual clinical/operations directed experience that focuses on the treatment of patients with a hematology or oncology diagnosis. Residents will have an integral role in the review and management of AHCI patients and therapies with both clinical and operations focused tasks.  The resident will provide clinical review and comprehensive disease state management for patients receiving outpatient infusion therapy. The resident will also learn the complete process of order verification, coordination of compounding and delivery of hazardous and non-hazardous medications with the goal of being proficient at day-to-day operations by the end of the rotation. There will be a vast array of clinical questions, projects, meetings to attend, and shadowing opportunities available to the resident also. 

The primary focus of the pain management rotation is to provide the residents with skills to effectively provide pharmaceutical care and make appropriate pain management interventions to hospitalized patients with acute and chronic pain. The resident will work closely with a multidisciplinary consult team during this rotation. In addition to gaining skills in assessing pain, the resident will also develop expertise in designing individual pain regimens and perform opioid equianalgesic conversions.

The Teaching rotation is an elective, longitudinal experience at Mercy Hospital. This rotation is designed to provide PGY1 pharmacy residents at Mercy Hospital with the necessary knowledge and skills to obtain a teaching certificate through the University of Minnesota Collaborative Residency Teaching Program. Residents will complete a 24 hour teaching assistant commitment through the University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy to gain exposure to academic teaching environments. Also, residents will complete 4 online learning modules on foundational content and participate in 4 live scheduled webinars in preparation for designing, delivering, and evaluating two units of instruction.

Off-site electives

  • Ambulatory Care (Allina Health clinics)
  • Toxicology (HCMC Poison Center)
  • Pediatrics (Minneapolis Children’s Hospital)
  • Rural Health (Various Allina Health affiliate hospitals)

Other elective learning experiences may be developed based on resident interest and preceptor availability.