Precision Insights Podcast

Conversations with innovators moving from personalized to precision healthcare

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Wrenda Teeple, the Chief Clinical Officer and Director of Regulatory Affairs at Arbit Consulting, joins us today to provide her expertise on PGx implementation, study designs, and the tension between the evidence we have and the evidence that we need.

Wrenda is also heavily involved with one of our favourite organizations, STRIPE. STRIPE is the “Standardizing Laboratory Practices in Pharmacogenomics Initiative,” a collaborative community joining public sector, private sector, and FDA to break down barriers and accelerate development of pharmacogenomics as a standard to care.

Learn more about Wrenda and her work:

Nita Limdi, Professor at University of Alabama at Birmingham, who is also an amazing clinical pharmacist, renowned researcher and epidemiologist, joins us to talk about the power of mentorship, the way that genomic research is changing, and how race and issues of equity intersect with this important field.

Dr. Limdi is a clinical pharmacist and epidemiologist with significant expertise in pharmacogenomics and pharmacoepidemiology, from research and discovery to its application and implementation in clinical practice. In addition to research and implementation, Dr. Limdi is committed to developing talent through mentorship: She brings a comprehensive and diverse set of skills, and expertise in pharmacy practice, pharmacology, pharmacogenomics, clinical research methods, epidemiology and biostatistics to didactic teaching and training residents, post-doctoral trainees and junior faculty.

Learn more about Dr. Limdi:

Stephen Creasy, the Director of Clinical Services at PharMerica, joins us to talk about how PharMerica approached pandemic response at their long-term care facilities, the potential of pharmacogenetics and precision medicine in long-term care settings, and the importance of embracing new technologies to improve patient care.

PharMerica is a national leader in pharmacy services, serving our partners in over 3,100 long-term care, senior living, IDD/behavioral health, home infusion, specialty, and hospital management programs.

Learn more about PharMerica and Stephen:

Jennifer Leib and Megan Anderson Brooks, Founder and Principal respectively of Innovation Policy Solution, joins us in this episode to discuss some of the most important US policies that relate to precision medicine, how COVID-19 has impacted the discussions surrounding the intersection of precision medicine and politics and the upcoming policy decisions that will shape the landscape of precision medicine in years to come.

IPS is a full-service government relations consulting firm which represents clients who are shaping the future of healthcare now with advanced medical innovations.

Learn more about Innovation Policy Solutions:

Todd Sega is the Senior Vice President of Development and Strategy at Pharmacy Quality Solutions, or PQS, which is a company specialized in performance management solutions for pharmacies. Todd joined us in this episode to talk about value-based pharmacy services the current landscape of precision medicine, and what types of quality measures might be developed in response to these changes.

Todd has a passion for quality improvement and more specifically, helping patients receive the best care from network pharmacies. He enjoys working and leading organizations through a process of understanding, engaging and eventually managing performance information and deploying a portfolio of improvement strategies and programs.

Read more about his work and PQS:

Craig Beavers, the Cardiovascular Pharmacy Specialist at UK, Healthcare Director of Cardiovascular Services at Baptist Health Kentucky and Indiana, and Assistant Adjunct Professor with the University of Kentucky College of Pharmacy, joins us in this episode to discuss why pharmacists should be leaders in pharmacogenetics implementation, the next steps for PGx in health systems and how he thinks when it comes to comprehensive medication management.

Craig serves as the co-chair of the clinical pharmacist workgroup of the American College of Cardiology and as a member of the Cardiovascular Team Council and Surviving Acute Myocardial Infarction Steering Committee. He is also an active member of the GTMRx Institute’s newly structured Evidence-Based Resources Subgroup of the Practice and Care Delivery Transformation Workgroup. 

Connect with Craig on LinkedIn.

Read more about Craig here: https://pharmacy.uky.edu/people/craig-beavers

Behnaz Sarrami, a pharmacist and entrepreneur with a collaborative pharmacy consulting business known as Missouri Pharmacogenomics Consulting, joins us in this episode to discuss how pharmacists can approach physicians to deliver value-added pharmacy services, how to incorporate pharmacogenomics (PGx) into patient care as a collaborative practice pharmacist and the two main lessons she has learned about starting a pharmacogenetics consulting business.

At Missouri Pharmacogenomics Consulting, she helps patients and their physicians navigate personalized medication management with a holistic approach to safer and more personalized medication management. 

Read more here: https://www.missouripgx.com/

Behnaz is also the co-host of the Pharmacy Podcast Network’s PGx for Pharmacists podcast show: https://pharmacypodcast.com/podcast/pgx-for-pharmacists/ 

John Papastergiou, arguably Canada’s most famous pharmacist, business leader, educator, and pharmacy innovator, has joined us in this episode to tell us about the utilization of pharmacogenomics (PGx) in pharmacy practice, the changing role of pharmacists, and a groundbreaking study that showed the effectiveness of PGx for treating depression in a pharmacy setting.

John owns and operates four Shoppers Drug Mart locations in busy downtown Toronto, where he leads innovative research, including one of the first community pharmacist directed pharmacogenetics clinics in Canada. This effort and others like it — generally aimed at exploring expanded roles for the community pharmacist — have led to a handful of awards and recognitions.

  • Both the Ontario Pharmacist’s Association Mentorship Award and the Canadian Pharmacists Association’s Canadian Pharmacist of the Year in 2014.
  • In 2016, he won first prize at the International Pharmaceutical Federation’s 76th World Congress of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences event in Buenos Aires, in addition to the Ontario Pharmacists Association’s “Voice of the Profession Award” and the “Pharmacy Practice Commitment to Care” Award for Overall Patient Care.
  • In 2019, John was named by the International Forum on Advancement in Healthcare as one of the top 100 health care leaders globally.
  • He was also presented with the OPA Award for Excellence in Research and Academia.

John can be heard regularly on Zoomer Radio and on his top-rated podcast, The Pharmacists Are In.

Katherine (Katie) Capps, Co-Founder & Executive Director of the GTMRx Institute as well as Founder & President of Health2 Resources, joined us in this episode of Precision Insights to discuss what comprehensive medication management (CMM) is, and how pharmacogenetics can be used in the CMM process.

As executive director of GTMRx, Katie provides leadership in supporting the institute’s mission and goals, including establishing and managing relationships with stakeholders across the health care spectrum. As a GTMRx Founding Board member, she works alongside other board members and collaboratively sets the strategy for the growth and activities of the organization. 

The GTMRx Institute™ is a catalyst for change that brings critical stakeholders together, bound by the urgent need to get the medications right. Check out the amazing initiatives that the GTMRx Institute is doing here. GenXys is a proud member of the institute.

Colleen Keenan, Research Consultant of Advisory Board’s Clinical Innovators Council, joined us in this episode to discuss about how Clinical Innovators Council is making pharmacogenetics a more accessible concept for health system clients, current trends in how health systems are starting to implement and standardize PGx and the challenges around PGx implementation.

Colleen Keenan is a consultant with Advisory Board’s Clinical Innovators Council, a research membership designed to help suppliers strengthen their relationships with Integrated Delivery Networks (IDN)s and providers. She has since led research on a range of topics including opioid stewardshipdrug diversionmedication reconciliation, disruptive trends impacting health system pharmacy, ambulatory clinical pharmacy models, and most recently pharmacogenomics. 

Read her PGx research here: Considering pharmacogenomics during COVID-19? Here’s what you need to know.

Sara Rogers, Director of the American Society of Pharmacovigilance (ASP) and Co-Chairman of the Pharmacogenomics Access and Reimbursement Coalition (PARC) joined us in this episode of Precision Insights to discuss the past, present and future of reimbursement for pharmacogenomics.

Sara leads clinical programs at the American Society of Pharmacovigilance (ASP), which is designed to build bridges between groups, ideas and individuals to rapidly and dramatically reduce the high rate of suffering and mortality due to adverse drug events in the U.S. 
She co-chairs the Pharmacogenomics Access & Reimbursement Coalition to address payer issues and the barriers posed for widespread implementation of pharmacogenetic testing, which is known to be a significant player in proactively addressing medication side effects. 
Related to ASP and PARC, Sara also co-developed the Standardizing Laboratory Practices in Pharmacogenomics (STRIPE) Initiative, a public-private multidisciplinary collaborative community to accelerate the development of personalized medicine practices as a standard of care. An initiative which is now recognized by the U.S Food & Drug Administration.

Read more here:

Melissa Badowski, Clinical Associate Professor and Clinical Pharmacist in HIV/Telemedicine for the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Pharmacy, joined us in this episode of Precision Insights to talk about her experience working as part of an inter-professional care team and using telehealth to deliver comprehensive medication management to vulnerable populations.

Dr Badowski manages patients with HIV in the Illinois Department of Corrections through telemedicine services as well as in the outpatient setting and through transitions in care. She is also the Founding Chair of the American College of Clinical Pharmacy’s HIV Practice and Research Network. 

Jared Augenstein, Director of Manatt Health, joined us in this episode of Precision Insights to talk about the reimbursement trends for digital health, the limits of telehealth/virtual care and the exciting opportunities it presents, and differentiating innovations that will improve outcomes, quality, and cost from those that won’t.

Jared’s primary areas of focus are advising public- and private-sector clients on delivery system transformation, population health, digital health, international and global health, federal and state health policy trends and provider markets.

Read more here: https://www.manatt.com/jared-augenstein

James Lu, Co-founder and Chief Scientific Officer, Helix, joined us to talk about the current state of genetics use in patient-centered care, the critical elements for successful large-scale genomics initiatives, and a vision to improve care delivery for life with reusable genetic information.

Dr. Lu co-founded population genomics company Helix in 2015, where he leads the research, regulatory, policy, and bioinformatics teams. Dr. Lu oversees the teams that develop and validate the science and technology behind Helix’s solutions, including Helix’s CLIA / CAP NGS lab. Dr. Lu also works with Helix’s partners to design and execute population-scale genomic research initiatives.

Learn more about Helix: https://www.helix.com/

Erik Abel, VP Insights, Ursa Health & former Director of Clinical Transformation, Highmark Health, joined us to talk about ways to leverage data & technology to help clinicians make optimized treatment decisions, move towards a truly informed prescribing, and to manage system-level changes in healthcare.

Erik is a subject matter expert in clinical operations, health IT and pharmacotherapeutics, driving strategic development, deploying transformative health and wellness services, and supporting new reimbursement approaches.

Adrijana Kekic, Pharmacogenomics Pharmacist and Associate Program Director for Outpatient Pharmacy at Mayo Clinic, joined us to talk about the role of pharmacists in delivering personalized care and the ways that technology is enabling PGx implementation at the point of care. She also discussed some challenges and opportunities in this exciting field of personalized medicine.

Adrijana has more than two decades of pharmacy leadership and clinical expertise in personalized medication therapy management, Adrijana continues to advance pharmacy practice. She is a founder of a networking platform dedicated to high impact professional women in healthcare.

Richard (Curt) DameVice President of Aon Health Solutions Practice, joined us to talk about the deployment of pharmacogenomics into popular health management programs, the successes he has seen through the members’ health outcomes, and the future he thinks it has.

Curt has more than 30 years of experience in the management, design, administration, compliance, funding, and communication of employee benefit programs.

Dave Wolfe, the founder and president of FusionRx, joined us to talk about the current healthcare interoperability landscape and the increasing role of pharmacogenetics (PGx).

With 25+ years of experience in pharmacy and healthcare IT consulting, he started FusionRx, a company that aims to fuse all data to provide individuals with personalized medication plans and make pharmacy a better practice.

Learn more about FusionRx: https://www.fusionrx.com/

Sue Paul, Founder and CEO of SyneRxgy Consulting, PGx101 and Medipreneurs, joined us to talk about her experience implementing pharmacogenetic (PGx) information into the point of care and educating patients and healthcare providers about the principles and implications of PGx in primary care.

Sue has over 20 years of experience working as a clinical pharmacist. She started three businesses to help solve healthcare’s pressing issues, bridge the gap in primary care and connect like-minded care providers together to fix the broken healthcare systems.

Learn more about her businesses here:

SyneRxgy Consulting: www.synerxgy.com

Medipreneurs Summit: www.medipreneurs.com

PGx101 Education: www.pgx101.com

Denise Giambalvo, Vice President of Midwest Business Group on Health (MBGH), manages the group’s membership retention activities, member communications, and finances.

In this episode, she discusses how her team is helping employers make informed decisions on healthcare strategy, address common health issues in the workplace and embrace the emergence of precision medicine.

Danny Sands MD, MPH of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center joined us to talk about how our health care system is not working as well as it should for patients and clinicians, nor for the government, employers, and insurance plans that pay for it. We can do better by taking better advantage of technology, combined with the sociological change of viewing health care as a partnership rather than a one-sided chore. Patients and clinicians should be partners.

Dr. Sands is passionate about healthcare transformation, non-visit based care, collaboration in healthcare, and participatory medicine. For over twenty years he has worked at the intersection of health care, technology, and business.

Tom Parry President of the Integrated Benefits Institute (IBI), joined us for a conversation on the value of good health.

It was Tom’s vision and leadership that resulted in the creation of IBI in 1995. Tom has guided IBI to become the leading research organization focused on health and productivity and has led to the growth of the organization to nearly 1,200 corporate members, representing more than 20 million U.S. workers.

Carrie Hurwitz Williams, Principal at McKesson Ventures, joined us for a conversation on emerging trends in precision medicine, pockets of adoption and organizations addressing business challenges facing the health care industry.

Carrie has nearly 15 years of healthcare experience from several vantage points within the healthcare industry. Prior to joining McKesson Ventures, she served as Vice President, Strategy and Business Development for San Francisco-based digital therapeutics pioneer Omada Health.

Bob Mehr is a business innovator and industry leader who began his career as a Compounding Pharmacist. Bob Mehr has been the President and CEO of Pure Integrative Pharmacy since 1999 opening 14 stores. His experience with precision prescribing goes beyond his practice and has had a tremendous impact on his own health.

‘A patient died right in front of me because they had the wrong medication. We need to stop practicing medicine like this, we need to be more precise. I opened my pharmacies because I wanted a change, and I wanted everyone to take advantage of it’ Bob Mehr, President, and CEO of Pure Integrative Pharmacy

Dr. Liam Brunham, Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine at the University of British Columbia and a Principal Investigator at the UBC Centre for Heart and Lung Innovation join us for a conversation on adverse drug reactions, pharmacogenetics and iPSC.

Imagine being able to reprogram your cells to find the right medication for your heart. Understanding the biological and molecular processes underlying adverse drug reactions (ADRs) is fundamental to develop innovative approaches to prevent them. One of the most promising technologies to identify the genetic mechanisms behind ADRs are induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs).