Wednesday, July 27, 2011


I am nearing the end of my official hospital training. Granted, I am still a new grad, so there will be lots of people watching over me even though there it doesn't say "training" on my schedule.

It is somewhat frustrating. My friends who work for bigger hospitals are in training forever. My hospital is a lot smaller. I still feel like I have a lot to learn.

I've gained a lot of knowledge in the past month, but I feel like it will be many more weeks until I'm entirely confident. One of my co-workers told me that it will probably take me at least 6 months until I feel 100% comfortable.

It's hard because there are a lot of other new people right alongside me. In some ways it makes things easier, but I can't always get the attention I need. Nursing is getting frustrated with us too.

One of my jobs is medication reconciliation or "med rec" for short. I go to the patient's rooms and find out what medicines they were taking at home so that they can be continued in the hospital. Apparently, most people do a ton of these in pharmacy school. Somehow, I missed that memo.

Overall, I have a lot of anxiety today. I have the next two days off and work the weekend. Hopefully that will be better.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Welcome to My Life

I think the story below is something that would happen to me at work:

In other news I'm really liking work. The people are nice, and I actually feel like pharmacy school was worth it. I was worried that would never happen!!

I got to pick out my benefits last night, and it was actually really exciting. I have vision insurance now! I've never had vision insurance before. It's really funny what makes me happy recently!

Saturday, July 9, 2011


After being incredibly spoiled and have the advantage of being at several hospitals where everything is typed into a computer, I've returned to the stone age of paper charts.

I forgot how hard it was to read doctor's handwriting!

I honestly think that learning how to read the different scripts of the hospitalists on staff will be the hardest part of my training.

It's sort of appalling how many mistakes could be made just because of HANDWRITING!

I wonder how the computer will change things as we continue moving forward :-)

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Grand Rounds

I'm excited to be mentioned in Grand Rounds: An Ode to Trainees

Thank you to Fizzy for including me.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

This Appears to Have Invisible Ink

      Pharmacist: I'm just calling to let you know that the unit sent us a blank fax.
 Unit Secretary: Oh thanks! Do you know which patient it was for?

Hospital Orientation: the great equalizer

This week I started at a new job, so I got to experience the joy that is hospital orientation.

Personally, I feel that all hospital orientations are the same. This time, I sat next to a surgeon who has been to orientation more times than he can count. Although I've only been to a couple different places, I think I might have figured out the general strategy. All orientations seem to contain the following components:

1. HR people who tell you that their hospital is the best possible place to work.
-First, they'll show you all of the different awards that they've won that
you've never actually heard of.
-Then, they'll tell you that you're part of a family and all so important and
-They will give you paperwork and pictures of hospital employees smiling which
you are supposed to keep and refer to, but later this paperwork will be shoved
in the back of your car and forgotten. They will also give you a stress ball,
button, chip clip, or other freebie for you to shove in your junk drawer.

2. "Get to know you games"
-Next, they will go around the room and ask what you are doing and claim that
you will become close friends. It doesn't matter that
you're sitting next to the new EVS worker who will work thirds on every fourth
Arbor Day. You are now best friends.
-Next, you will have to explain to everyone around you what you're actually
doing even though at this point you may have no idea. Regardless, the people
next to you will ask really dumb questions about your new occupation. The
hospital has gone to the farthest lengths to make sure that the people next to
you have no idea why a pharmacist, nurse, or resident would ever be employed
by your institution.

3. Benefits
-Next, they'll tell you about your benefits in the most generic way possible
and talk again about why it's so great to work at your hospital. They'll
probably emphasize that there is a group of women who like to ride on a bus
for spa treatments in Tahiti for a very very low price. They will not explain
anything important to you (when do we get paid? how do we take vacation?), but
instead they will talk about how good the hot dogs are at the employee
baseball game (NOTE: the employee baseball game will always occur on your

4. Lunch
-The lunch will be catered in from the cafeteria, and it will be quite good.
However, it will not resemble anything close to what the cafeteria actually
serves (if you do eventually have the ability to purchase it on a random
Tuesday, it will be at least 12 dollars). The HR team will boast that they
have reasonable prices and a large selection.

5. JCAHO Competencies
-Now, you will sit for four hours while they complete the JCAHO competencies.
They will forget to include something important (for example, it would be nice
to tell the new pastoral care team what "contact precautions" actually means).
The first time hospital employees will listen intently. Everyone else will
text underneath the table.

What are your experiences with orientations? Anything else to add?

Friday, July 1, 2011

First Week

Hi guys!

Today ended a very busy week.

I started my new job, and orientation was chaotic. I had no idea where I was going after I showed up on Monday morning. No one know where I was supposed to be, and on Wednesday they told me to report to the wrong hospital. I got to my main hospital on Wednesday at 7 a.m., and they told me that I should go to the other hospital 30 minutes away at 8. Of course it wasn't my fault, but it didn't make me feel very comfortable with my new job!

On Wednesday I learned that my position was different than what I originally thought. HR, my boss, and I definitely weren't on the same page.

It made for an awful Wednesday night before I got everything sorted through on Thursday . . . I'm still questioning what I'm actually doing. I feel like there's only so much you can learn in an interview . . .

Today I was finally in my department training. I wrote my first "official" order as a pharmacist. Normally, someone else has to sign off on everything I do. While I had help today, no one else had to sign my work. It was kinda cool :-)

Overall, everyone seems pretty nice, and I think it will be a good position. Being a new grad is so hard though!

I think I might have to spend some time at the pool before tackling my four day week after the holiday!