Dr. Liu obtained his Pharm.D. degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) –College of Pharmacy in 1999. In the early part of his career, he was a staff pharmacist in several hospitals in the Chicagoland area.
Dr. Liu discovered informatics through serendipity. One hospital introduced him to pharmacy information systems and automated dispensing cabinets (ADC). He was incredibly interested in the way that technology helped facilitate patient care. He volunteered for informatics projects so he could investigate his new interest. He enjoyed the challenges of informatics and knew he wanted to pursue the specialty full-time.
He went back to school to take informatics coursework at UIC’s graduate college. In 2013, he earned an informatics certificate (Post-Masters Certificate in Health Informatics) from UIC. He obtained a Certified Professional in Healthcare Information & Management Systems (CPHIMS) certification in 2014. Lastly, he became Epic Willow Inpatient certified in 2016.
Rush University Medical Center (RUMC) is a not-for-profit, 729 bed, teaching hospital that serves a wide variety of patients. Experts in specialties, such as oncology, orthopedic surgery, neurology and critical care, provide comprehensive care to all patients. The Department of Pharmacy is an integral part of the patient care team. RUMC is nationally recognized for quality and safety, earning a 4th consecutive Magnet designation, CMS 4-Star Rating across the health system, Straight “A”’s for Leapfrog, and ranked #5 nationally in Quality Excellence among all Academic Medical Centers for Vizient.
Dr. Liu implemented 340b management software earlier this year. He was heavily involved in the build and testing that went into the development of the software. Dr. Liu also worked on updating an ADC system. He rebuilt the ADC formulary and various components (ex. Cabinet and User Roles). His approach was to minimize the amount of change from the update so the staff would have minimal issues with using the new version.
Dr. Liu is excited to start work on a project that will enable interoperability between the electronic health record and smart pumps. He is currently in the planning stages and looking forward to the challenges to come.
Advice for Someone New to Your Specialty Area
“Having a strong understanding of pharmacy operations is incredibly important! I develop informatics technology that is mindful of pharmacy roles and workflows. Through my experiences as a pharmacist, I am able to create solutions that augment our functions and services. Building a balance between pharmacy and technology leads to better adoption and maintains patient safety. Regular pharmacy staffing also allows me to monitor technology utilization and identify issues. For me, being a good pharmacist is a crucial first step to becoming a good informaticist!”
Initial Involvement in ASHP
“I initially joined ASHP because I was looking for a way to connect with other pharmacy informaticists. I am really glad I found the informatics community on ASHP Connect! The forum is a good place to ask questions or share experiences. The discussions on the forum also allow me to learn new information and network with others. It is comforting to see other members with the same thoughts and concerns as me on the forum.”
Value of ASHP
“ASHP is a good resource for virtually all aspects of pharmacy. Membership does have many perks. Members can obtain continuing education credit through ASHP. People can join discussions on timely issues via the forums on ASHP Connect. Up-to-date information is also readily available. The resources that ASHP provides truly helps members practice pharmacy.”
“ASHP’s support of pharmacy practice is really remarkable. Through leadership, ASHP establishes guidelines and best practices. The leaders and members of the organization advocate for our profession in national and state government. And, they provide many opportunities to learn new information and skills. Their support of pharmacy drives our ability to care for patients.”