2024 Future of Pharmacy: Dr. Sabrina Lorico

Dr. Sabrina Lorico
Clinical Pharmacist
Red Deer Regional Hospital (RDRH)

The Future of Pharmacy Award is presented to up to three pharmacists per year who exude a passion for pharmacy and offer extraordinary promise to the profession. Nominees will exhibit strong leadership skills and the initiative to become one of the profession’s role models.  

One of this year’s Future of Pharmacy award winners is Dr. Sabrina Lorico.

As a clinical pharmacist at Red Deer Regional Hospital (RDRH) specializing in palliative care within a general medicine unit, Sabrina consistently exhibits exceptional clinical acumen, a profound dedication to patient welfare, and an unwavering passion for advancing the pharmacy field.

Sabrina joined the team in 2019 through the Hospital Pharmacist Residency program and has made remarkable contributions ever since. Her wealth of knowledge, collaborative spirit, and adept handling of intricate patient cases have solidified her as an indispensable asset to the medical team.

From the spring of 2022 to the fall of 2023 there was a lack of dedicated palliative physician presence on the unit. During this interim period, Sabrina continuously took the initiative to serve patients with palliative conditions and helped bridge the gap in coverage. When RDRH recruited a new palliative care physician, Sabrina viewed this as an opportunity to ensure a collaborative rounding team was reformed on the unit. As a result of her commitment, the unit has a thriving interdisciplinary palliative care-focused practice.

As her palliative physician colleague states, “Sabrina is one of the most dedicated and valued members of our inpatient palliative care team. Her dedication, compassion, and empathy are immediately obvious to anyone who works with her. She possesses a wonderful combination of proficiency and efficiency to go along with her extensive clinical knowledge. To top it all off she’s funny, friendly, and approachable.”

Amidst the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, Sabrina’s adaptability and clinical knowledge played a crucial role in supporting the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) team. Her willingness to undertake a critical role with limited re-training underscored her commitment and resilience while maintaining a positive and energetic demeanour during this demanding period.

Sabrina is dedicated to fostering a culture of safety, both within the pharmacy department and her clinical unit. She has led the development and initiation of the RDRH Pharmacy Quality Council. This group is tasked with reviewing medication safety incidents and processes to develop systems-based strategies to reduce medication errors and improve patient safety. Part of this work includes sharing lessons from medication incidents with the teams to raise awareness of issues and help build a just culture where medication errors and reporting are seen as learning opportunities to improve patient care.

As a pharmacist training team member, Sabrina provides leadership, guidance, and mentorship to incoming employees. Her contributions to developing training materials, certifications, and processes have played a fundamental role in shaping clinicians’ professional growth. Sabrina’s active involvement in precepting pharmacy students and residents further underscores her dedication to nurturing the next generation of pharmacy practitioners.

“Sabrina is a rising star in the pharmacy field, embodying leadership, dedication and clinical excellence,” says nominator Jason Howorko. “Her contributions to the department and commitment to advancing patient care make her an outstanding candidate for the Future of Pharmacy Award. I am confident that Sabrina will continue to excel in her career and significantly contribute to the future of the pharmacy profession.”