Family Medicine Residency Program

Pharmacotherapy Education

Six clinical pharmacy specialists, Drs. Klatt, Farrah, Sakely, Koenig, Haver and Castelli are faculty members of the UPMC St. Margaret Family Medicine Residency Program (FMRP) and provide a robust pharmacotherapy education through inpatient and outpatient teaching services and a formal didactic curriculum. Nested within the FMRP, the UPMC St. Margaret Pharmacy Residency Program, established in 2003, has grown to include 5 PGY-1 Pharmacy Practice Residents and 3 PGY-2 Ambulatory Care Pharmacy Residents and 2 PGY-2 Geriatric Pharmacy Residents. Family medicine physician residents, pharmacy residents and faculty provide collaborative team-based patient care at the program’s affiliated Family Health Centers (FHC), Geriatric Care Centers (GCC), and UPMC St. Margaret inpatient teaching services.  This pharmacotherapy curriculum for the family medicine residents enhances the program’s integrated approach for modeling excellence in delivery of comprehensive, team-based, patient-centered healthcare in order to meet the broad challenges faced in Family Medicine. 

The major components of our pharmacotherapy educational curriculum include:

Morning Rounds

Clinical pharmacy specialists are an integral part of each of the interdisciplinary inpatient teaching services at UPMC St. Margaret. During inpatient care rounds, Drs. Haver and Castelli provide case-related discussions of relevant evidence based pharmacotherapy concerns such as drug choice, dosing requirements, mechanisms of action, side effects and drug interactions. As members of the inpatient teaching services, the pharmacists and pharmacy learners further medication initiatives that are ongoing among the outpatient clinics and the health system and they emphasize safe and accurate transitions of care. Additional clinical pharmacist specialists contribute to other teaching service teams.

Core Content Series

The Core Content Series includes a pharmacotherapy curriculum, including core topic lectures, drug updates and medication safety seminars, that are presented on a monthly basis for all residents. Didactics are provided by a combination of pharmacist faculty members and PGY2 pharmacy residents.  

Precepting and patient care at the New Kensington, Bloomfield-Garfield and Lawrenceville Family Health Centers (FHC) and Geriatric Care Centers (GCC)

Drs. Klatt, Farrah, Koenig and Castelli provide direct patient care at the three FHCs. The pharmacist faculty, along with the PGY2 pharmacy resident, sees patients in the Medication Management office sessions and provides precepting assistance to physician residents with pharmacotherapy decision making. Incorporated into several required PGY1 and PGY2 rotations, medical residents are assigned to see patients at all 3 FHCs during one-half day session with the Medication Management Team.  Drs. Sakely and Haver provide direct patient care at both GCCs and associated skilled nursing (SNF) and assisted living facilities.  Family medicine residents spend time at the GCCs and assisted living facilities during their third year geriatric rotation and in the SNFs longitudinally as part of a continuity nursing home patient panel.  Each resident is part of a SNF ‘POD’ team of other learners (family medicine and pharmacy residents) along with geriatrician and geriatric pharmacist faculty.  Together they provide comprehensive care for patients in this setting throughout all three years of their learning.

Medication Management Rotation

A four-week required Medication Management Rotation is included as a part of our FMRP PGY-2 curriculum. This rotation provides the physician resident numerous weekly team-based direct patient encounters targeting skills to enhance optimization of patients’ medication therapies. Residents work with Drs. Klatt, Farrah, Koenig and Castelli four half-day sessions per week and are devoted to managing patient medication specific issues on the areas such as anticoagulation, diabetes, hypertension, hyperlipidemia, asthma, COPD, and polypharmacy management. 

Inpatient and Outpatient Consults
Both the inpatient and outpatient clinical pharmacists are available for formal and informal medication management consults on hospitalized, FHC and GCC patients, either to assist with the management of patients' drug therapy or for teaching about a specific medication or disease state.

Pharmacotherapy Elective

Second and third year residents have the opportunity to choose a pharmacotherapy elective. During this elective, residents will have their learning tailored to their educational interest. The pharmacist faculty will provide the resident a customized comprehensive pharmacotherapy review through in-depth topic discussions, case presentations and direct patient care.

Quality Improvement Projects

Residents may elect to partner with pharmacy residents and faculty in areas of practice-based research and quality improvement projects.  Interested residents can participate within various aspects of the development and implementation of the quality improvement projects that lead to opportunities for scholarly activities, such as national presentations and peer-reviewed publications.