5 minutes with... Dawn Davin27 May 2020
COVID-19 has, in my opinion, brought people’s depth to the surface and facilitated a return to basic humanity with Dawn Davin BSc(Pharm), Clinical Pharmacist, Clinical Lecturer, School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Trinity College, Dublin
1. What’s the biggest challenge you’re facing at the moment?
It’s a very challenging time professionally and personally. I think the greatest challenge at the moment is learning how to manage a very different and dynamic work environment that is constantly changing. This encompasses different ways of interacting and communicating with patients and colleagues to ensure patient care is optimised and communicated effectively to patients and their families at a time that is stressful, demanding and fearful for everyone. I also think being able to practically support colleagues and being able to recognise and respond to challenges as they present is paramount to support patients and every single member of the team. Staying up to date with evolving clinical evidence is vital in optimising patient care.
2. What’s the biggest focus for you and your team at the moment?
The biggest focus remains delivering patient care and ensuring we adapt as healthcare professionals to an ever-changing clinical environment. Linked inextricably to this is the support of colleagues in a stressful and ever-changing work environment.
3. What’s the most inspiring story or team work that you’ve witnessed through COVID-19?
I am desperately humbled by patients who have been forced to face their own humanity in what is such an enforced and isolated manner, separated from family and friends. It has been surreal, stark and terrifying for people affected by COVID-19.
In parallel, I have been reminded of what it is to be part of a truly inspiring collaborative multidisciplinary team who do so much to not only support patients and their families, but colleagues as well. Healthcare professionals, like everyone, are struggling in different ways with separation from family and friends, fear, tiredness, illness and the tenacity it takes to manage in the current hospital environment.
4. What support do hospital pharmacists need now, more than ever ?
For me, effective communication, supportive professional networks and positive collaboration between pharmacists and between members of the wider multidisciplinary team are the cornerstones of what is needed to help pharmacists at a professionally challenging time. Sustainability and resilience must be built gradually and consistently in to the workplace to ensure pharmacists respond to COVID-19 with efficiency and effectiveness.
5. Are there any words of encouragement and thanks you would like to give to the hospital pharmacists?
Describing the humanity and support which I have received from fellow pharmacists and healthcare colleagues is genuinely hard to express in words. COVID-19 has, in my opinion, brought people’s depth to the surface and facilitated a return to basic humanity – values and community spirit - that all too often get hidden in a busy world. It is encouraging to be able to share experiences, fears, hopes and challenges together as a community.