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Residency Spotlight: Medical University of South Carolina, Critical Care

The Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) is a state-assisted institution consisting of six colleges, a 700-bed academic medical center, a level I trauma center, and four hospitals: University Hospital, Ashley River Tower, Shawn Jenkins Children’s Hospital, and Institute of Psychiatry. Located in downtown Charleston, MUSC is nationally recognized for its innovation and quality outcomes through more than 100 outreach locations, 1 million annual patient encounters, and highly ranked specialized care teams. MUSC is also home to one of the largest and oldest pharmacy residency programs in the country with a history of training leaders in the pharmacy field. The program offers a wide array of experiences designed to prepare individuals to excel in future pharmacy practice.

The PGY2 critical care pharmacy residency program is constructed to train pharmacists to care for critically ill patients through a focus on learning experiences in the medical, neurosciences, cardiothoracic, surgical/trauma, and medical/surgical ICUs. Residents are challenged to develop their clinical knowledge through participation in rotational learning experiences and topic discussions and involvement in the multidisciplinary care of critically ill patients. With the support of preceptors, residents are provided with diverse learning opportunities in research, teaching, and leadership that help grow their skill set and practice.


Learning Experiences

Required Rotations

Orientation month – July

Research month – December

Medical ICU

Cardiothoracic ICU

Surgical/Trauma ICU

Transplant Abdominal/Heart & Lung

Neurosciences ICU

Medical/Surgical ICU


Elective Rotations

Emergency Medicine

Cardiac ICU

Burn ICU

Antimicrobial Stewardship

Infectious Diseases Consult

Pediatric ICU

Pediatric Cardiac ICU

Benign Hematology Consult

Malignant Hematology Consult


Longitudinal Learning Experiences

  • 24-hour in-house on-call: Participate in codes, traumas, complex anticoagulation, and pharmacokinetic dosing
  • Staffing: ~1 weekend per month
  • Critical Care Lecture Series
  • Critical Care Journal Club
  • CE-accredited seminar presentation



Residents complete two research projects during the year: a medication use evaluation and an institutional review board–approved project. The MUSC College of Pharmacy offers a research certificate program for residents that consists of live sessions aimed at improving residents’ ability to design a study and report research findings. In addition, the critical care group integrates research topic discussions into its longitudinal lecture series targeted at the evaluation of statistical test selection, data management, and specific interest areas of the residents.


Teaching and Precepting Experiences

The academician preparation program provides pharmacy residents the opportunity to attend seminars and obtain practical experiences in teaching, precepting, and student evaluation in a variety of settings. Through this program, residents can serve as affiliate instructors at the MUSC College of Pharmacy and are assigned a faculty mentor to guide them throughout. During the year, residents precept P4 students from both the University of South Carolina and MUSC and participate in didactic lectures, in-services, evaluation of student grand rounds presentations, and many more teaching experiences. Within the critical care program, there are additional opportunities to educate health care staff through multidisciplinary rounds and to engage in educational series for medical residents.


Mentorship, Leadership, and Professional Development

  • Residents are matched with a program adviser who serves as their advocate and mentor in professional development and assists with career planning
  • Involvement in the MUSC Pharmacy Practice Committee and other hospital committees
  • Involvement and mentorship in local and national pharmacy organizations


The opportunities available at MUSC Health prepare the PGY2 critical care resident to effectively manage the pharmaceutical care needs of complex critically ill patients, develop protocols and guidelines, and precept pharmacy learners. Throughout the year, residents are mentored by leading pharmacy preceptors and have the flexibility to adapt experiences to their specific learning interests and career goals. Ultimately, the program supports the development of well-rounded, confident critical care pharmacists who go on to succeed as clinical specialists and clinical faculty members around the country.

In addition, MUSC supports numerous residency training programs, including:

  • PGY1 Pharmacy Practice
  • PGY1 Community Based
  • PGY2 Infectious Diseases
  • PGY2 Oncology
  • PGY2 Internal Medicine
  • PGY2 Ambulatory Care
  • PGY2 Emergency Medicine
  • PGY2 Medication-Use Safety & Policy
  • PGY2 Pediatric
  • PGY2 Psychiatric
  • PGY2 Solid Organ Transplant
  • PGY1/2 Administration and Leadership
  • PGY1/2 Pharmacotherapy


More information about the MUSC Health pharmacy residency program is available at Find us on Twitter @MUSCPharmRes.

Submitted by:
Lauren Koscal, Pharm.D., BCPS

PGY2 Critical Care Pharmacy Resident


Joe Mazur, Pharm.D., BCPS

PGY2 Critical Care Residency Program Director

Medical Intensive Care Unit Clinical Pharmacy Specialist

Medical University of South Carolina

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