Published on April 21, 2020 by Sarah Waller  
Jack Thomas

Jack Thomas earned both a Doctor of Pharmacy and Master of Public Health from Samford University in 2018. Today, he works as a postgraduate year one (PGY1) pharmacy resident at Kingsbrook Jewish Medical Center in Brooklyn, New York.

I am currently covering the emergency department and volunteering with the hospital’s COVID-19 task force. It has been amazing to see how our team has stepped up to meet this ongoing challenge. We've strengthened interprofessional communication, streamlined patient care, and developed policies and procedures for treating COVID patients. 

Being in New York, a hotspot for the virus, our hospital is completely overrun. We've converted multiple floors to COVID care floors. Our emergency department is three to five times its capacity. We have codes going off constantly, and as clinical pharmacists, we respond to every code. 

The knowledge and skills I gained from my Master of Public Health has helped me immensely in navigating the COVID-19 pandemic. The situation has been brutal—I have seen far too many people pass in codes over the last two months—but I honestly feel I've been able to do good.

Having completed one year of fellowship, and now approaching the end of my first year of residency, I am looking towards my next step. I matched with postgraduate year two (PGY2) residency in pharmacotherapy in New Jersey.

Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.