Sunday, June 24, 2012

Institutional at U of M

Posted by Courtney K at Sunday, June 24, 2012

Hello all! It's hard to believe rotation 1 has already ended and a whole new experience begins Monday. I consider myself pretty lucky to have had my institutional rotation at U of M for my first one. I know this isn't the rotation at the top of the excitement list for most people, but I seriously enjoyed it and it was a really good one for easing into the P4 life. I'm not gonna say I wasn't a little jealous of the students I saw on a daily basis doing exciting things like going on rounds, counseling patients and wearing their own pagers (Victor and Alison!!), but my time will come :). Here's the run down of my 5 weeks:

-Week 1- 6th floor satellite- I spent this week with a pharmacist doing order verification and checking. Most of the pharmacists I was with let me "drive" so I felt like a real pharmacist- answering phone calls, paging prescribers, and calculating vancomycin and aminoglycoside doses. I feel a lot more comfortable with Careweb, Carelink and Theradoc after this week and I have a much better feel for how the satellite pharmacies operate. By the end of the week I was flying through orders. 
-Week 2- Mott 10th floor pharmacy- This week was similar to my first week, but in the new BEAUTIFUL hospital. Order verification with peds is A LOT different. For every single order that comes through you have to calculate the mg/kg dose to make sure it's appropriate. Lexicomp peds was my friend. A good portion of my time in Mott was spent in the new clean room. There has to be a pharmacist in there at all times because they have to check doses before they are added together and then do a final volume check at the end. I love pediatrics so it was cool to spend some time over there before my peds surgery rotation (#6)
-Week 3- Investigational Drug Service- I'll be honest, I didn't think I would like this week. Research and studies are just not my thing. But IDS was awesome and the staff was all so friendly! I knew little to nothing about this service prior to this rotation and it was so cool to see how they manage the 350-400 active studies going on in the hospital. I spent time dispensing, prepping for site visits, reading/discussing articles, and even writing a section of the Dispensing Guidelines for a new study that will be starting up soon. 
-Week 4- Administration- This week I got to spend some time with the other students on this rotation (Alicia, Kristen and Paul) interviewing the different pharmacy administrators. It was very interesting to hear what they do from day to day and ask questions about some of the things we had seen in our first 3 weeks. The 4 of us also used this week to work on our CE presentation for the pharmacy technicians on Infection Control. 
-Week 5- Clean Room- My last week was spent in the clean room in B2. I worked with different technicians the first two days making the IV batch and the last three days with the pharmacist, Lisa, checking them. Even though I have IV making experience from work, I saw a lot of things I hadn't seen before and learned from everyone I worked with. During this final week, we also presented our CE to the technicians in two separate sessions. 
-Other thoughts- You really get out of this rotation what you put into it. There is minimal outside work, so I used my evenings to wrap up my PharmD write-up. Yes, some days may be a little boring, but attitude and enthusiasm really help. Ask lots of questions and be involved. I had a pharmacist offer to let me go down to the OR one day while she was working. I got it ok'd by Dr. Kraft and spent one morning during the admin week checking out how the OR pharmacy works. One day during my last week I was in the right place at the right time when the med safety pharmacist needed help on a special project. I got to work with him to identify all the physicians at U of M who had ordered a particular IV iron product that was causing adverse drug reactions so we could inform them of the risks and offer alternative therapy. 

Good luck to everyone in rotation 2! I'll be heading to Chelsea for my Non-Traditional LTC rotation! 

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