Pharmacy Residency Program - VA New Jersey Health Care System
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VA New Jersey Health Care System


Pharmacy Residency Program

Why Choose a PGY-1 Pharmacy Residency at the VA New Jersey Health Care System (VANJHCS)?


Affiliated with the Rutgers New Jersey Medical Schools, we are an integrated health care system providing inpatient, outpatient, and extended care services to our nation’s Veterans. The system is comprised of two campuses, located in East Orange and Lyons, plus ten Community Based Outpatient Clinics (CBOCs) throughout northern and central New Jersey. Serving more than 56,000 Veterans, we average 630,000 outpatient visits and 5,200 inpatient admissions per year.

Based on the medical home model of care, we use Veteran centered interdisciplinary Patient Aligned Care Teams (PACT) to deliver primary care. VA’s Computerized Patient Record System (CPRS), a fully integrated and comprehensive suite of medical record applications providing complete electronic patient health records, clinical decision support, and clinical reminders, expedites efficient patient care.

The main campus at East Orange is a tertiary care teaching facility offering acute care services (medical, surgical, psychiatric, spinal cord injury), substance abuse treatment, methadone maintenance treatment program, hemodialysis services, and primary and specialty care outpatient clinics. Located on 34 acres in northeast New Jersey, it is adjacent to the city of Newark. The campus is in a residential area with the Manhattan skyline visible in the distance. New York City is located 15 miles to the east with easy accessibility by car or public transportation.

The Lyons campus provides extended care (nursing home, rehabilitation), palliative care, long term inpatient psychiatric care and residential mental health programs, as well as primary and specialty care outpatient clinics. Situated on 365 acres, it is 22 miles west of East Orange. The CBOCs provide primary and specialty care outpatient services.

Pharmacy Services Overview

Pharmacy Service operates inpatient pharmacies at the East Orange and Lyons campuses and three outpatient pharmacies located at East Orange, Lyons, and Brick, NJ. The inpatient pharmacy service at East Orange operates 24/7. The outpatient pharmacies process 3,800 prescriptions per day.

Clinical pharmacists and clinical pharmacist specialists work closely with interdisciplinary medical teams to provide comprehensive pharmaceutical care to our Veterans. Responsibilities include evaluation of non-formulary/prior authorization drug requests, medication use evaluations, participation in interdisciplinary committees, and the preceptorship of pharmacy students.

Under a scope of practice with prescriptive authority, clinical pharmacist specialists work at the top of their licenses to provide direct patient care and medication management for a variety of chronic disease states including diabetes, hypertension, anticoagulation, dyslipidemia, HIV, Hepatitis C, and smoking cessation.

We are affiliated with three Schools of Pharmacy – Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, Fairleigh Dickinson University College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, and Philadelphia College of Pharmacy at the University of the Sciences.

Residency Overview

The purpose of the VANJHCS PGY-1 Pharmacy Residency Program is to prepare the resident for direct patient care clinical pharmacy practice. Upon completion of the PGY-1 program, the resident will be eligible for board certification and a postgraduate year two (PGY-2) pharmacy specialty residency training program.

Our PGY-1 residency program focuses on ambulatory care pharmacy practice. It is designed to strengthen the residents’ skills in direct patient care and medication management, clinical pharmacy practice, and leadership.

Many of our preceptors have a scope of practice with prescribing privileges and work in pharmacist-run clinics. They are credentialed to provide disease state and medication management for the patients in their clinic. The pharmacist-run clinics include primary care (management of diabetes, hypertension, dyslipidemia, smoking cessation), infectious disease, anti-coagulation and psychiatry. Most preceptors have completed residency training and are board certified within their specialty.

Residents will develop the clinical and communication skills needed to provide direct patient care. As an integral member of interdisciplinary patient care teams, residents will use their drug therapy expertise and clinical judgment to improve patient outcomes. There are many opportunities to provide patient and staff education, present journal clubs and patient cases, and precept pharmacy students.

Building on the Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) education, learning experiences will develop well-rounded pharmacists with skills in critical thinking, project management, leadership, and oral and written communication. Everyone involved with the residency program is focused on ensuring that the residents are able to get the most out of the residency year. Residents will be well prepared for PGY-2 specialty training or clinical pharmacy practice.

There are 7 required core and 5 elective rotations as well as required longitudinal rotations.

Core rotations – 4 - 5 weeks each:

1. Orientation
2. Acute Care
3. Ambulatory (Primary) Care
4. Anti-Coagulation
5. Pharmacy Practice
6. Pharmacy Services Administration & Leadership
7. Rural Health/Home Based Primary Care

Elective rotations – 4 weeks each (choice of 5):

1. Extension of a core rotation(s)
2. Ambulatory Care Infectious Disease
3. Extended Care/Geriatrics
4. Home Based Primary Care/Spinal Cord Injury
5. Pharmacy Informatics
6. Rural Health/ Home Based Primary Care
7. Psychiatry

Longitudinal experiences:

1. Major project to be presented as an ASHP Midyear poster, an Eastern States Conference for Pharmacy Residents and Preceptors platform presentation and a publishable manuscript.
2. Medication Use Evaluation
3. Medication safety/adverse drug event reporting
4. Non-formulary/prior authorization drug consult reviews
5. Pharmacy Resident Clinic - anticoagulation and primary care patients
6. Pharmacy systems process project
7. Staffing – inpatient (one weekend per month) and outpatient (one day per month) pharmacy practice experience

Teaching is an integral component of pharmacy practice. We encourage our residents to obtain an optional Teaching Certificate through our affiliation with Rutgers University and Fairleigh Dickinson University. The Teaching Certificate program is chosen above and beyond requirements of the residency program. Each resident chooses a mentor who will follow his/her progress over the course of the year.

We participate in the ASHP Resident Matching Program (the "Match"). Our PGY-1 Pharmacy Residency NMS Match Code is 235113. The PGY-1 Pharmacy Residency conducted by VA New Jersey Healthcare System in East Orange, NJ, is accredited by ASHP.

Related Documents
PGY1 Pharmacy Residency Requirement Overview
PGY1 Pharmacy Residency Brochure
Residency Application Process
Questions & Answers About Our Residency
Rotation Descriptions

For more information, please contact:

Leonard Partanna, Pharm.D, BCGP, BCPP
Residency Program Director
VA New Jersey Health Care System
Pharmacy Service (119)
385 Tremont Ave
East Orange, NJ 07018
Telephone: 973-676-1000 x1856
Fax: 973-395-7157

ASHP Accredited

Contact Info


  • VA New Jersey Health Care System
    385 Tremont Ave
    East Orange, NJ 07018

Contact Number(s)

  • 973-676-1000 Ext. 1627

Hours of Operation

  • 8:00am-4:30pm