Dr. Megan Dillaman has an exciting and dynamic career as an ambulatory pharmacy specialist with the Bone Marrow Transplant (BMT)/Hematology Malignancies team at the West Virginia University Cancer Institute.
Dillaman, a 2012 graduate of the West Virginia University School of Pharmacy, says the thing she enjoys most about her career is forming relationships with patients and their families. This month the Hematology/Oncology Pharmacy Association (HOPA) will recognize her hard work and dedication to patient care with the 2020 New Practitioner Award. HOPA supports pharmacy practitioners and seeks to promote and advance hematology/oncology pharmacy to optimize the care of individuals affected by cancer.
HOPA presents the New Practitioner Award annually to a member who is early in their career (typically the first five to seven years of practice) and has made a notable contribution to developing or supporting clinical hematology/oncology pharmacy services. HOPA describes the recipients as "Inspiring practitioners whose laser-like focus on research and education translates into patient care that is second to none."
Dillaman's co-workers at the Cancer Institute nominated her for the award.
"The WVU pharmacy oncology team congratulates Megan on this impressive achievement that shines a bright national spotlight on the great work that she does in the ambulatory oncology realm at WVU Medicine and the Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center,” said Dr. Dmitry Walker, Pharmacy Manager, Oncology and Infusion Services. “Our patients benefit daily from the dedication of pharmacy, medical and nursing clinicians like Megan."
As an ambulatory pharmacy specialist, Dillaman serves as a liaison between patients and a team of physicians, APP's, nurses and social workers. She sees anywhere from 15 to 40 patients per day. Some of her primary responsibilities are patient education, evaluating new chemo patients prior to beginning their regimen, checking them for side effects or adherence issues throughout their therapy and monitoring transplant patients for immune suppression.
Outside of work, Dillaman is just as dedicated to her profession. She chairs the HOPA Publications Committee and teaches an oncology pharmacy course at her alma mater. Dillaman says oncology pharmacy is a growing field, and she hopes that her class will help generate interest and excitement among student pharmacists.
"I am working with a student group that will present a poster at HOPA, so I am optimistic that my award will inspire them and other PharmD students and residents to get involved early in their careers," said Dillaman. "Also, I hope the award brings WVU national recognition."
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Abraham Kanate, MD, Medical Director for the Osborn Hematopoietic Malignancy and Cellular Therapy Program and Associate Professor recently led the consensus guidelines from the American Society of Transplant and Cellular Therapy (ASTCT) on indications for transplant and cellular therapy.
Starting the week of March 30, virtual exercise classes, wellbeing and mindfulness programs will be available to WVU and WVU Medicine employees.