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Jersey City Medical Center

Since 1882, Jersey City Medical Center (JCMC) has provided Hudson County with state of the art medical treatment across a broad range of disciplines and is the area’s only teaching hospital. The Medical Center operates based on the pillars of Patient Safety, Patient Satisfaction, Clinical Quality and Economic Health. The Pharmacy Department supports the mission of “Enhancing Life” to the people and communities we serve. The Pharmacy Department uses a state of the art electronic clinical information system to ensure a safe medication process. The system allows for computerized prescriber order entry (CPOE), guidance from evidence-based order sets as well as bedside barcode medication administration (BCMA). Medication distribution is optimized by the use of automated dispensing cabinets throughout the institution.

The department is staffed by a total of 49 full time equivalents providing a wide range of operational and clinical services both on the inpatient and ambulatory care sides. Our pharmacy technicians are highly trained professionals who are competent to perform a wide range of technical and patient care activities including the compounding of both sterile and non-sterile products. Clinical generalist pharmacists work in the main pharmacy fielding drug information requests, reviewing laboratory data, allergies and vetting appropriateness of all medications ordered through the CPOE system while overseeing the medication distribution activities of pharmacy technicians. In October 2021, the department initiated a vancomycin dosing and monitoring consult pilot service. With a pre-approved protocol, pharmacists are independently managing patients on vancomycin IV therapy, either with AUC-based dosing or trough-based dosing based on eligibility.

Currently over 95% of the pharmacy technicians are certified technicians while 13 pharmacists hold prestigious Board Certifications in a variety of specialty areas. Clinical specialist pharmacists are decentralized throughout the institution providing specialized pharmaceutical care at the bedside and in the outpatient settings. The presence of decentralized clinical pharmacist specialists is a great source of satisfaction to our patients in addition to the rest of the interdisciplinary team. The specialists have been instrumental in improving patient satisfaction survey scores as they pertain to communication about medications, educating patients on what their medications are for and what side effect to expect. Their daily activities are focused on patient monitoring, vancomycin service, rounding with prescribers, providing medication information to both patients and other members of the health care team. Clinical specialists are decentralized in the ICU, Emergency Department, Psychiatry, Medical-Surgical units, comprehensive HIV clinic. Clinical activities are further supported by two Rutgers faculty members and an antimicrobial stewardship pharmacist. Our specialists serve as preceptors for our ASHP Accredited PGY1 Residency Program as well as students on rotation from Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy, Rutgers University. Residents from other hospitals are also frequently hosted by JCMC preceptors. In addition to inpatient population, the pharmacy department services a number of outpatient clinics including HIV, oncology, behavioral health, women’s health, dental, vision, wound care, maternal fetal health and group homes, as well as a hospital licensed satellite emergency department located in Bayonne.

The pharmacy staff consistently strives for excellence. The year 2021 saw the first full year of operation for the outpatient Oncology Ambulatory Care Center, complete with its own clean room and staffed with 2 pharmacists and 1 technician. Dedicated and specialized pharmacy staff at the infusion center has allowed active pharmacist participation in chemotherapy regimen planning, direct patient interactions to improve safety and satisfaction, financial gains with optimized waste billing and dose rounding, and clinical trial involvement. The year was also marked by the opening of a $100 million expansion of the Emergency Department and a separate pediatric Emergency Department. Finally, throughout 2021, the Pharmacy Department has undertaken the implementation of Pyxis ES upgrade and continued the groundwork for our planned 2023 EPIC transition.

Jersey City Medical Center Pharmacy Leadership