A 1983 graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Pharmacy, Martha Boger is currently the Pharmacy Training and Development Specialist for Novant Health. In her role, she provides educational support across the hospital system.
After nine years in community pharmacy, she joined the team at Forsyth Memorial Hospital in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, as a staff pharmacist. With a passion for teaching and training new team members, coupled with her knowledge and organizational skills, she began precepting new pharmacist hires. Later she was named a Clinical Assistant Professor of Pharmacy Practice at Wingate University School of Pharmacy and began serving as an Advanced Pharmacy Practice Experience preceptor for their Advanced Hospital Practice Experience rotations. She continues to share her skills with pharmacy and technician students in an administrative elective rotation. With the merger of Carolina Medicorp Inc. in Winston-Salem (of which Forsyth Memorial Hospital was a part) and Presbyterian Healthcare in Charlotte in 1997 to form Novant Health, Martha’s job in staff development evolved into that of a system specialist and now encompasses all of Novant Health.
Martha is a member of ASHP, Northwest Pharmacists Association, North Carolina Association of Pharmacists (NCAP), and the ASHP Section of Inpatient Care Practitioners Education Steering Committee. With NCAP, she serves on their eLearning Committee, Convention Planning Team, and on the Health-System Practice Forum.
Outside of the professional environment, Martha enjoys traveling and volunteering on home repair teams with the Appalachia Service Project, disaster recovery, and other rebuilding projects in the underserved areas of North and South Carolina. She has also led her pharmacy team for the last four years in volunteering at the Salvation Army Christmas Warehouse.
Overview of Facility/Health System
Novant Health is a not-for-profit, integrated healthcare system that serves patients and communities in Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia. The Novant Health network consists of more than 1,500 physicians and over 28,000 employees who provide care at over 580 locations, including 15 medical centers, outpatient surgery centers, neighborhood medical plazas, rehabilitation programs, diagnostic imaging centers, and community health outreach programs. Headquartered in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, Novant Health is committed to making healthcare remarkable for patients and communities, serving more than 5 million patients each year.
In her role as Pharmacy Training and Development Specialist, Martha has played an integral part in the implementation and education for new technology including Pyxis ES, Pyxis Pharmogistics, BD Alaris Infusion Viewer and Interoperability, and Glucommander. She provides general pharmacy orientation across the system for new pharmacy team members, as well as distributing both a weekly pharmacy education newsletter and monthly Pharmacy and Therapeutics Committee newsletter. One accomplishment she is extremely proud of is facilitating Pharmacy Leader Onboarding, a two-day event, where more than 30 presenters from pharmacy administration share vital information about the support they offer to Novant Health facilities and clinics across the system. Additionally, Martha works with subject matter experts to develop training packets and competency validation tools, including medication listing, technician functional requirements, and clinical training to name a few.
Initial Involvement in ASHP
I am currently a member of the ASHP Section of Inpatient Care Practitioners Educational Steering Committee. This is my first experience with a professional pharmacy organization at a national level. I enjoy participating behind the scenes as we plan for our national meetings and look at ways to enhance programming. Further, the opportunity to get involved with creating and proofing ASHP resources is rewarding.
Why did you become involved in ASHP?
I am relatively new to ASHP, joining just two years ago, as my peers were becoming more and more involved with the organization. I attended the National Pharmacy Preceptors Conference in Washington, DC, that year. This conference provided me an opportunity to attend multiple educational sessions addressing day to day issues I was encountering as I worked with students, residents, and new pharmacy team members. I left the conference with strategies I could incorporate into my orientation pathways.
Advice for Someone New to Your Specialty Area
I have always enjoyed teaching, and I think that love has helped me grow into the trainer I am today. As a small child, I loved to “play school” and pretend I had a classroom full of students. As early as elementary school, my teachers allowed me to assist with their projects and grading papers. When offered the opportunity to train other pharmacists and precept pharmacy students early in my career, I jumped at the chance. A love of teaching, patience, and the ability to adapt to changes in technology and clinical practice, coupled with understanding generational differences of those we teach are a must.
Value of ASHP
In additional to networking with my peers across the nation, I am amazed with the opportunities for professional growth, clinical skills enrichment, and preceptor development that ASHP offers. In my role as Pharmacy Training and Development Specialist, ASHP resources, such as those provided in the Competence Assessment Tools for Health-System Pharmacies and other clinical references, provide a firm foundation for standardized orientation for new team members and growth for incumbent team members.