Vancouver, BC

Dr. Tanveer Brar

Dr. Tanveer Brar

Dr. Tanveer Brar

Clinical Pharmacy Specialist in Critical Care at Surrey Memorial Hospital

Profile submitted by:
Alison Yong

Brief description of role or responsibilities

Tanveer is a clinical pharmacy specialist in critical care at Surrey Memorial Hospital, who previously worked in infectious diseases at Vancouver General Hospital, providing direct patient care while supporting clinical rotations amongst pharmacy students and residents.

Describe how the individual or team made a positive contribution to patient care or their pharmacy department:

ID has never been my strong suit, though, not for lack of trying. Traditionally, I have been perfectly content waiting for sensitivities to return, picking a relatively narrow antibiotic, and then making a valiant effort in treating for a duration that hopefully won’t incur a raised eyebrow from our friends in stewardship.

And whenever our ID service was involved, I graciously deferred to their expertise and then patted them handily on the back for their help. Though I tried to muddle through extensive consult notes to better understand their decision-making process, it wasn’t always easy to grasp their reasoning pathways.

But things started to change when Tanveer started at VGH as our ID pharmacist. Like Tom Brady (her favourite NFL quarterback with whom she shares the same initials), Tanveer was meticulous in her preparation, carefully transcribing notes over endless piles of presentations, journal articles and guidelines. It was obvious that she was passionate about ID, and thankfully for me, equally keen to share her knowledge, frequently tossing ID dimes that would help improve my practice.

What I found most helpful was when she explained her own thought processes – whether it be assessing a messy trach sample, weighing antibiotic site penetration, or debating antibiotic duration. Those mini-ID-TED talks had me realize that my ID knowledge was not nearly where I wanted it to be. So in between trawling through for fantasy football recommendations, I called an audible and added in an occasional IDSA guideline.

And while wheedling a day less of antibiotic therapy isn’t always an easy conversation nor the most pressing concern on a busy unit, discussions with Tanveer and a more comfortable familiarity with resources and guidelines provided me with the know-how in making the best possible case for optimizing therapy.

I would be remiss not to mention that Tanveer’s reach went beyond just the ID service at VGH. In the midst of discussing a case with my senior, I casually name-dropped our ID pharmacist, prompting my senior to comment how much she enjoyed working with and valued Tanveer’s input. And from interactions with residents who spent time on the ID service, it was clear that Tanveer was held in the highest regard.

While her time at VGH was brief, her formidable work ethic and passion for ID left a lasting impression. And though I would not go so far as to claim I have since experienced an ID awakening, I am committed to improving my ID knowledge. Like TB’s buddy Gronk, sometimes I feel as if I lumbered into the perfect situation where I had access to not only an excellent resource to propel my ID learning, but just as importantly, a great friend who could appreciate football memes.

Helllllllo from the other side (of VGH), my friend!