Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center

Pharmacy Practice Residencies

Frequently Asked Questions

Application/Interview/Selection Process

Will SFGH require a professional writing sample as part of the application (like an article, monograph, etc)?

For the application, just the letter of intent will suffice.

What are the most important criteria that you will use to select the candidate for this position?

We value candidates who are flexible, proactive, have a positive attitude, solid knowledge base, and are team players. Essentially, we are looking for someone who would be a good fit at our hospital and our pharmacy department.

What will your interview process be like?

There will be two panels of three to four people each, a one-on-one meeting with our residency director, and a tour. We do not require the candidate to do a presentation during the interview process. We estimate the on-site interview to last about four hours.

What are the approximate dates for the interview?

We plan on conducting all of the interviews on selected dates in late January to February. Candidates will be notified if they are selected for an on-site interview.

How important is GPA?

A good GPA is important, but how well you do on your rotations and the quality of your letters of recommendations from your clinical preceptors will be just as important.

Attributes/Outcomes/Goals/Future of Residency Program

What makes this program different from other residency programs? What is the difference between the Touro residency based at SFGH and the SFGH residency?

Our program will have a heavy emphasis on acute care, HIV, substance abuse, psychiatry, and trauma. Our diverse patient population is like no other in the country. The Touro residency uses the SFGH site for some rotations and is more ambulatory care focused. Our SFGH residency is more focused on acute care.

What are the prospects of being hired on as a full time employee after residency is finished?

We would like to hire our residents, depending on availability of positions and how the resident does.

What type of positions will this program best prepare me for?

This program will best prepare you for an acute care clinical pharmacist position or a specialized PGY-2 residency position.

Logistics of the Program

What are the staffing/distributive service commitment requirements?

Residents will be required to staff one full weekend per month, and will have one subsequent day off. They will also be required to staff 2-3 evening shifts per month, which would end by 9:30 PM. The number of evening shifts required will depend on the difficulty of the rotation (i.e. two evening shifts during ICU rotation). The staffing component is roughly equivalent to the current requirement for our clinical staff.

Is there flexibility in the rotation schedule?

Yes, since there are only two pharmacy residents, schedule changes should be relatively easy, will depend on preceptor availability.

If I end up really liking one rotation, do I have the opportunity to extend it?

Yes, this will depend on preceptor availability and that you are able to complete the required goals and objectives for the residency.

Will the residents have an office or desk space? Is there access to a medical library?

Yes, residents will have a laptop computer and desk space. They will also have access to our campus medical library.

When will I need my California pharmacist license by?

You must be licensed by September 28th. If there are extenuating circumstances, we can work that out on a case by case basis. Licensing must be obtained in a timely manner so that residents will be able to fulfill their requirements, including staffing.

Will residents be required to be on call?

Not at this time.

Will SFGH residents get priority in choosing rotations over residents from other institutions who also rotate at SFGH?

Yes, SFGH residents will get priority in choosing rotations before we open them to residents from UCSF, Touro University, and VA who want to rotate through our hospital.

Are there opportunities to take up extra staffing shifts?

You are always welcome to sign up through registry on your own if you want to work extra shifts, in addition to your assigned staffing commitment.


What are the opportunities for teaching pharmacy students, medical/hospital staff, and pharmacy staff?

Residents will be required to do teaching of hospital staff, including physicians, nurses, and pharmacists. Residents can also mentor fourth year pharmacy students who have rotations at SFGH.

Since SFGH is affiliated with UCSF and Touro, will I have opportunities to do rotations or teach there?

Yes, we can arrange for that if you are interested in didactic lecturing.

Will there be ACLS training? Will I be expected to respond to codes?

Yes, ACLS training will be provided. You will be expected to respond to codes during your ICU and ED rotations.

How will residency research projects be determined?

For an idea of what research project you could do, please visit our Preceptors page, which has more details on the type of projects our clinical staff are involved in. If you have your own project idea, we will support you in your research, if it is a project qualified enough to be your yearlong residency project.

SFGH Pharmacy Department/Hospital

How would you describe the department's culture?

In a few short words: dynamic, collaborative, innovative, and easygoing.

How is the pharmacy department perceived by other medical/nursing personnel?

Mostly productive and collaborative, but some of the traditional tensions usually seen between the different disciplines can still be felt. Once relationships are built, however, they are very strong. Pharmacy has a significant influence within the structure of the hospital's committees and core clinical services, including the ED, ICU, Infectious Diseases, and Family and General Medicine. Over the past nine years, the "Consultant of the Year" Award, a recognition typically given to a physician, has instead been awarded to three of our pharmacists, Kristin Harter (Women's Health), Ed Lor (Pain), and Christina Wang (Cardiology/Anticoagulation)

What kind of pharmacy distribution and staffing model do you have?

We have expanded pharmacy services in our new acute care facility that opened in May 2016. We have a large centralized inpatient pharmacy and pharmacy satellites in the ED< ICU, and OR/PACU areas. Residents may staff in any of the pharmacies after training.

How is SFGH unique among the other hospitals in the San Francisco Bay Area?

We are the only Level 1 Trauma Center for San Francisco and northern San Mateo County. Other characteristics that set us apart include a diverse patient population, patients with significant psychiatric and substance abuse problems, indigent patients, and a large HIV population. We also have the only psychiatric emergency center in San Francisco.

Does SFGH have CPOE and/or eMAR?

We currently have CPOE/eMAR on all units except for Labor and Delivery.

I heard you are building a new hospital. When will that be completed?

The new hospital opened in May 2016.


Who are your preceptors?

Please visit our Preceptors page for a full description of each of our preceptors.

Are all the preceptors clinical pharmacists?

Each of our available rotations has at least one clinical pharmacist as the main preceptor.

Do the pharmacists round with their services?

Yes, our clinical pharmacists round with their services, except on their staffing days.

Living in San Francisco

What is the average rent in San Francisco?

A one bedroom can go for anywhere between $1,500 to $2,900, depending on the neighborhood.

How is parking at SFGH? What are my public transportation options?

Parking is extremely limited at SFGH. San Francisco's public transportation system (Muni) can be used to get to SFGH. Biking is popular in San Francisco, and you can sign up to access the campus bike cages for free. UCSF also operates a free shuttle service between all of its affiliate campuses, including SFGH.

Where do you suggest I live during my residency?

Neighborhoods surrounding SFGH include: Potrero Hill, the Mission, SOMA, Bernal Heights, and Noe Valley. The Sunset may be a more affordable option, and there is a UCSF shuttle that runs between UCSF Parnassus and SFGH.


Does the residency program provide funding to travel to professional meetings?

Residents will be provided up to $2,000 each for travel expenses during the residency year.

Which professional meetings will the residents be expected to attend?

Residents will be expected to attend CSHP, ASHP Midyear, and Western States.