|dc.description.abstract||Background and aim: Foundation pharmacy residency programs have promoted competency development in leadership, education, and innovation for early career pharmacists as a criteria for advancing practice. The process in which pharmacy residency supports competency development and the extent to which it has an impact on competency development remains unclear. The aims of this thesis are to evaluate the extent that existing residency programs are supporting competency development in early career pharmacists, to explore how the process of pharmacy residency is supporting competency development, and to identify opportunities for improvement in foundation residency competency development.
Methods: A narrative review evaluating evidence for competency development in leadership, conducting education, and support of innovation competencies was completed in the first phase of the thesis. In the second phase, twenty-two former foundation residents and preceptors at a major tertiary teaching hospital in Melbourne, Australia were recruited for semi-structured one-on-one interviews in a qualitative analysis of the foundation residency program. Former residents and preceptors were asked to describe how they felt residency supported competency development in leadership, education, and innovation, and the extent that pre-defined activities, objectives, and tasks contributed to the advancement of these competencies.
Results: In the phase one narrative review, existing literature demonstrated that foundation residency programs have supported competency development in leadership, conducting education, and support of innovation through the use of courses, assessments, and activities, but to varying degrees. In the phase two qualitative interview analysis, competency development was influenced by four key themes: system-dependent facilitators, system-dependent barriers, individual resident attitudes, and pharmacy department influences. The framework of residency and its pre-defined objectives and tasks was perceived to strongly support competency development in conducting education but was felt to have less of an impact on the leadership and innovation competencies. The use of skill building courses in education development were reported to be effective in complementing a structured residency framework.
Discussion: Foundation pharmacy residency is effective in supporting competency development when there is a clear structured framework with objectives and guidance for pre-defined activities and tasks, supplemented by skill building courses. Ambiguity and variability on how to develop competencies led to them being viewed as “tick-box” activities by residents and preceptors. Residency programs must ensure clear frameworks for competency development exist and are supplemented with the necessary skill building courses to develop these competencies.||