Dr. Tony Dao, PharmD, CPHIMS received his Doctor of Pharmacy at the USC School of Pharmacy in 2012. In addition, he pursued multiple certifications related to healthcare informatics, receiving his CPHIMS in 2014, CPEHR in 2015, and CPHIT in 2016.
Overview of Facility/Health System
CHOC Children's is the first dedicated pediatric hospital located in Orange County, California. CHOC includes a 334-bed facility at the main campus in the City of Orange and a hospital-within-a-hospital in the city of Mission Viejo. CHOC includes four centers of excellence and a robust residency program that involves multiple clinical care specialists, including pharmacists.
Dr. Dao has been a key pharmacy team member for the implementation and ongoing maintenance of Oncology EHR. In addition, he's been instrumental in additional pharmacy optimization projects. Some of these projects include pharmacy clinical documentation, decision alerts optimization, and pharmacy clinical dashboards. Prior to his current place of employment, he was involved in a system-wide 2-year-long Electronic Health Record implementation for Computerized Provider Order Entry, Clinical Decision Support, Barcode Medication Administration, and IV Smart Pumps at a county health care agency.
Initial Involvement in ASHP
Dr. Dao has been involved with the ASHP Section of Pharmacy Informatics and Technology since 2012, serving as an active member in one of the many workgroups that contribute to advancing the Section's goals in pharmacy informatics.
Advice for Someone New to Your Specialty Area
“For anyone new to the pharmacy informatics space, I would recommend three actions: ask questions, identify opportunities, and keep on learning.
An informatics pharmacist's duties are almost always different from one area of practice to the next. Typically, the role is tailored to the needs of the employer. Because of this, you should always be asking questions to understand the environment that you are in. If you aren't familiar with how something has historically been built, ask about it. If you aren't sure how certain workflows are at your current employer, ask about it. Getting the baseline knowledge is critical to your success as an informatics pharmacist.
Having said that, sometimes asking questions is not enough. Sometimes, a workflow is so ingrained in daily tasks that it's second nature for the individuals involved in the workflow. Spend a day or two following workflows from start to finish and observing them with your own eye. Since you are new, you come with a fresh perspective. Look for opportunities for improvement in those workflows and start your contributions from there.
Finally, keep on learning. The landscape of healthcare data and healthcare technology is rapidly evolving and expanding. There are new legal requirements and best practices constantly being defined, and there are lots of creative folks out there in the field doing amazing things. Keep yourself up to date and be a lifelong learner."
Why did you become involved in ASHP?
“As a student, ASHP provided a lot of opportunities for pharmacy students to learn more about where they want to go in their career. I enjoyed being surrounded by many knowledgeable individuals that inspired me to advance my own learning and knowledge. After completing pharmacy school, I continue to be part of ASHP to contribute back to the organization in advancing the pharmacy profession."
How would you explain the value of ASHP to a friend or colleague?
“I would say that if you care about where the pharmacy profession is going, you should care about being a member of ASHP. Being part of ASHP is being part of a collective voice and being part of a larger network of pharmacy professionals that are working together to ensure that the profession has a bright future. In addition, there are so many amazing individuals who are ASHP members that you may find great value in getting to know. The ASHP conferences are also astounding venues for collaboration and for advancing your clinical knowledge or checking out the latest pharmacy-related technologies."
What is the value of ASHP for the profession?
“ASHP advocates for the pharmacy profession. This doesn't just mean pharmacists, but pharmacy technicians and pharmacy students as well. It's important that we have an organization that can represent the profession and advocate for our future. ASHP's progressive leadership and commitment to the pharmacy profession is reflected in the many advances they've been able to contribute to, such as specialized residency programs, provider status, and continuing education initiatives."