Clinical Pharmacy Specialist – Critical Care
Vancouver General Hospital
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Brief description of role or responsibilities
Dr. Greg Mah is a clinical pharmacy specialist in Critical Care at Vancouver General Hospital. Along with providing care to ICU patients suffering from polytrauma, burns, sepsis and other critical illnesses, Greg has also been providing care to patients admitted for COVID-19. He is a core member of the team and participates in daily rounds with the critical care team, making lifesaving pharmacologic interventions for these patients.
Description of roles to improve patient care or provide pharmacy services during the COVID-19 pandemic
Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic Greg has been involved in appraising evidence and guiding how practitioners in BC treat COVID-19. Early on he summarized the evidence for the role of hydroxychloroquine in COVID-19 as part of the CSHP initiative “COVID-19 What Pharmacists Know Now”. In addition he was a panelist on the COVID 19: What Pharmacists Know Now Forum for the 2020 CSHP BC Spring Therapeutics Update. Greg also became a member of the original COVID-19 Therapeutics Committee (CTC) and contributed to weekly meetings scheduled to discuss the evolving evidence and information that became available regarding treatment options for COVID-19. Despite new trials and case reports being published at an alarming rate and often without thorough peer review, Greg kept up to date on publications and was a valuable resource to other practitioners in guiding evidence based practice.
In addition to his clinical role in caring for patients admitted with COVID-19, Greg also helped to ensure pharmacy services were not interrupted to the newly established “hot zone”. He worked to ensure all essential medications for this patient population were available in the medication dispensing cabinet, as well as ensuring things like the fax machine were set up to allow orders to be sent to the pharmacy. Although these tasks are not part of his usual practice, they are essential to patient care.
In addition to his clinical role, Greg prepared and facilitated a lecture for the UBC Entry to Practice PharmD class on pathophysiology, therapeutic alternatives and evidence-based management of COVID-19 infections.
Description of impact to improve patient care or provide pharmacy services during the COVID-19 pandemic
Greg’s diligence in keeping up with the most recent publications, appraising the evidence, and educating his critical care colleagues helped to improve the quality of care COVID-19 patients received. Additionally, his knowledge and experience also made him a valuable mentor to other pharmacists caring for critically ill and non-critically ill COVID-19 patients. Through his contribution to the CTC, Greg has not only influenced the care provided to the patients admitted to the ICU at VGH, but has helped to impact the care provided by practitioners across BC.