The Charger Blog

University and Yale New Haven Health Collaborate to Train Next Generation of Pharmacy Leaders

An exciting collaboration between the University of New Haven and Yale New Haven Health enables YNHH Health-System Pharmacy Administration and Leadership residents to earn their Master of Healthcare Administration from the University while completing their residency.

July 26, 2022

By Renee Chmiel, Office of Marketing and Communications

Maxcy Hall at the University of New Haven.
Maxcy Hall at the University of New Haven.

During the last academic year, Dianne Techwei ’23 MHA, a resident at Yale New Haven Hospital who is pursuing her Master of Healthcare Administration at the University of New Haven, had to stay late at the hospital one day to help a provider with a question about a patient’s drug information.

Afraid she might be late to one of her classes, she immediately sent her professor an email explaining the situation. Dedicated to patient care, she says she was very grateful for her professor’s quick and accommodating request that enabled her to put her patient first while still prioritizing her studies.

“COVID clinical shifts were particularly demanding and hectic, but I was able to have a one-on-one discussion with my professor about my schedule,” explains Techwei. “They were always open to working with me and ensuring that I submitted my best work on time. I have enjoyed greatly the flexibility of the program.”

‘Further contextualize their clinical expertise’

Techwei is taking part in Yale New Haven Health’s PGY1/2 Health-System Pharmacy Administration and Leadership program. As part of a collaboration with the University of New Haven, students in the two-year program complete the Master of Healthcare Administration program at the University – a Commission on the Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education (CAHME)-accredited program – during their residency.

“The University of New Haven’s collaboration with Yale New Haven Health’s Pharmacy Residency program is unique,” said Samantha Morales ’18 MHA, former interim director of the MHA program in the University’s School of Health Sciences. “It offers students a chance to further contextualize their clinical expertise and experiences through the lens of healthcare administration.”

‘I have found it to be an honor’

Designed for pharmacists interested in high-level leadership, managerial, and supervisory positions in an institutional pharmacy-practice setting, the program creates a hands-on environment for students to apply what they’re learning as part of the MHA program. They explore topics such as human resources management, health systems operation and design, and financial systems.

"All of the courses I have taken thus far have been very instrumental in my success as a healthcare leader."Dianne Techwei ’23 MHA

Residents gain experience implementing pharmacy management theory while building a strong foundation for continuing to develop their management and leadership skills. They also receive support from passionate preceptors – experienced practitioners who provide supervision during clinical practice – who meet all American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) requirements. Residents have assigned preceptors for every learning experience and project, enabling them to have hands-on experiences with mentorship.

“Planning for post-graduate training in health-system pharmacy administration is crucial for strategic pharmacy leaders’ succession planning,” explains Nigjar Polat, PharmD, MBA, CPPS, program director and associate director of pharmacy operations for YNHH. “At Yale-New Haven Health, we have offered pharmacy residency training programs for both PGY1 and PGY2 in our Health-System Pharmacy Administration and Leadership (HSPAL) program for many years, and the ASHP accredits our residency programs.”

Dr. Polat says that, in recent years, applicants have been increasingly interested in training programs that included a master’s degree. In collaboration with the University of New Haven, Yale New Haven enrolled its first class of the program this summer.

“We were fortunate to partner with the University of New Haven to create a two-year combined residency program,” she said. “After we implemented this combined program, we noticed a significant increase in the number of applicants. As a leader and a graduate of the PGY1 and PGY2 HSPAL programs at Yale-New Haven Hospital, I have found it to be an honor for me to serve as the director of this residency program. I hope to continue to enhance and grow the program in the years to come.”

‘My success as a healthcare leader’

As part of their MHA, residents complete one or two courses at a time alongside their residency. The curriculum complements the residency learning experiences.

Techwei, the YNHH resident and MHA candidate, looks forward to continuing to explore topics that will enable her to continue to grow as an impactful leader as she completes the program. She has already found class discussions to be timely, relevant, and informative.

“At work, I have encountered a lot of the topics and discussions we discussed in class, such as inventory management, communication between colleagues, and the intersection between law and healthcare,” she said. “All of the courses I have taken thus far have been very instrumental in my success as a healthcare leader. My law class provided me the opportunity to learn about the intersection between policy and health care, even addressing how non-healthcare-related policies may eventually impact healthcare practice.”