Many of you have wondered, what will BJ and Julie do now? I was accepted into a geriatric focused residency program at the VA medical center in St. Louis. Yes, we have already moved, we are working on a post about it. Anyway, to pass the time in NC between graduation and moving I studied for two more exams. They were the two required to get a license and covered everything I had learned about pharmacy over the past 4 years. Somehow I managed to pass and am now a licensed pharmacist. I also worked at Rite Aid as an unlicensed pharmacist. This provided us with a little cash to move to MO, some valuable experience and some entertaining stories.
One such story was quite the reality check for me. I answered a phone call from a doc who asked, "Is this the pharmacist?" My reply was, "uh...uh, yeah I'm a pharmacist." He didn't seem too sure that he was talking to a pharmacist but asked his question anyway. Fortunately I was able to answer it. The story doesn't sound that funny but it was since I was a new pharmacist unsure of myself in the situation and he was an oral surgeon who didn't call things in so he was unsure of how a phone call to a pharmacy was supposed to go.
So the residency program is a one year deal. I will be working at the VA with a geriatric outpatient clinic for most of my time. That means I will be seeing patients with chronic disease states that are managed by medication. I will be working with them to optimize there medivation regimin and hopefully improving their quality of life. There are a few months I may be doing other things to round out my education.
Most people ask if pharmacists have to do a residency. The answer is no, pharmacists don't, but if you want certain jobs they are highly reccomended if not required. I am still not sure exactly what I want to do, but I am currently leaning towards a clinical faculty position, which is one of those jobs that a residency is highly reccomended. During my residency I will also complete a teaching certificate program which can't hurt when looking to become a teacher.