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UHCOP Faculty Member Matthew Wanat Inducted as Fellow of American College of Critical Care Medicine

UH College of Pharmacy's Matthew A. Wanat, Pharm.D., BCPS, BCCCP, clinical assistant professor and critical care pharmacy specialist at Michael E. DeBakey Veterans Affairs Medical Center (MEDVAMC), has been inducted as a Fellow of the American College of Critical Care Medicine.

The induction was held during the Society of Critical Care Medicine's 47th Critical Care Congress Feb. 25-28 in San Antonio. Fellow status recognizes individuals who have demonstrated significant contributions and have made an impact on the profession at a regional, state, or national level.

photo of Wanat and family
UHCOP faculty member Matthew Wanat celebrates his induction to the American College of Critical Care Medicine with his family during the Critical Care Congress in San Antonio.

"Being recognized as a Fellow in the American College of Critical Care Medicine is a great honor," Wanat said. "I love taking care of critically ill patients and teaching this knowledge to pharmacy learners. I want to thank my mentors and colleagues who have helped me on my journey to make an impact in the realm of critical care medicine. I’m excited for future opportunities with SCCM going forward."

Wanat's extensive activities for the SCCM-Texas Chapter have garnered support and recognition from his peers. Two years into a three-year elected term on the chapter's Board of Directors, Wanat was elected president-elect in 2016 and recently completed his one-year term as president. He received the chapter's 2015 Excellence in Leadership Award and 2016 Excellence in Service-Education Award.

Michael Sirimaturos, Pharm.D., BCNSP, BCCCP, FCCM, Wanat's predecessor as SCCM-Texas Chapter president-elect/president, praised Wanat's proposing and implementing progressive technology initiatives for the chapter such as revamping its website and enhancing member communication.

"Without a doubt, Matthew has been an integral part of the leadership of the Texas chapter not only by position, but by example," said Sirimaturos, who also precepted Wanat during his PGY1/PGY2 residencies at Houston Methodist Hospital. "His involvement and leadership is part of the reason the Texas Chapter remains strong today."

At the national level, Wanat has served as an exam item writer for the Board of Pharmacy Specialties and as a member of the Experiential Education Programming Committee of the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy and the Education Committee of the SCCM national's Clinical Pharmacy Practice section. He also has twice earned SCCM Presidential Citations in 2015 and 2017.

Wanat's nominators also noted teaching recognition he has received outside of the organization, including as a recipient of the UH Provost's Teaching Excellence Award at the Clinical/Instructor level in 2016, two-time recipient of the Rho Chi Society UH Beta Omicron Chapter's Excellence in Teaching Award in 2013 and 2015, the Phi Lambda Sigma Leadership Society's Faculty Leadership Award in 2015, and the UHCOP Faculty Teaching Excellence Award in 2014.

A preceptor/co-preceptor for more than 40 pharmacy students from UHCOP and medical residents from Baylor College of Medicine, where he holds a clinical instructor appointment, Wanat developed a Critical Care Pharmacotherapeutics elective course into a hybrid online/in-class course and secured grant funding for the purchase of mannequins and software to incorporate code blue simulation into the curriculum.

"(Pharmacy students) not only see pharmacy being practiced at the highest level, but also find a peer to emulate," said Kevin W. Garey, Pharm.D., M.S., FASHP, professor and chair of the UHCOP Department of Pharmacy Practice and Translational Research in which Wanat is a faculty member. "Students gravitate toward him for his clinical knowledge and teaching prowess."

Wanat's position as an ICU Critical Care Pharmacy specialist at MEDVAMC also has afforded him to practice pharmacy in advanced multidisciplinary collaborative care team model, including prescriptive authority.

"Dr. Wanat's clinical practice, evidence-based practice, and research have led to the development of multiple innovative programs to educate and train other pharmacists in the management of critically ill patients," said Mary Lou Warren, DNP, RN, CNS-CC, FCCM, advanced practice nurse in the Department of Critical Care at The University of Texas-MD Anderson Cancer Center. "Dr. Wanat also has been instrumental in translating research findings related to critical care into best practices through his work with pathway, order set, and protocol development."