Mrs Rekha Shah

Mrs Rekha Shah

educational support


Mrs Rekha Shah, BPharm (Hons), MRPharmS 

E: T: 01923 244366 ex 7732 

Professional Qualifications 

CMI Management Coaching and Mentoring Certificate (Level 5)
Accredited Independent Prescriber - June 2007, King’s College, London Accredited Supplementary Prescriber - King’s College, London
Certificate in Clinical Pharmacy - The School of Pharmacy, University of London
Bachelor of Pharmacy (Hons) - The School of Pharmacy, University of London. 

Rekha is currently the Lead Pharmacist for Surgery for West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust (WHHT). She is responsible for leading, delivering and developing high quality clinical pharmacy services to the Surgical Directorate in the Trust. This includes inpatient services as well as a fully integrated pharmacy service to the preoperative assessment clinics (POACs) on both sites in the Trust. 

Rekha is a founder member of the Preoperative Association and was on the Board for a short time in 2004. She has now returned as the newest member of the board. 

The opportunity for Rekha to work at POACs first came in 1995 at Mount Vernon Hospital, Northwood, Middlesex. The preoperative assessment as a concept was in its infancy and she was to explore the potential benefits of a pharmacist at a Urology POAC. The pharmacy service that Rekha pioneered at the POAC, Mount Vernon Hospital was one of the earliest if not the first nationally. After a pilot for 3 months, the benefits were obvious and from there, she has continued to develop the pharmacy services to the POACS in WHHT. Today there are a total of 3 full time pharmacists at the POACs on the 2 sites in the Trust: Watford General Hospital and St Albans City Hospital. 

Rekha and her team see all elective Surgery patients who are coming in as inpatients at the POAC. They also see complex day case surgery patients and provide support to the POAC nurses for any information they need on medicines. The pharmacist’s role includes: advising patients about their medications perioperatively, transcribing medications on the drug charts, prescribing and supplying bowel preps to patients who need this in preparation for Surgery, assessing warfarin patients to see if they need bridging, ensuring VTE risk assessments are completed and recommending the appropriater dose of the low molecular weight heparin required, organising in advance alternative formulations of medications for Upper GI Surgery patients. 

Rekha is an independent prescriber and uses this skill at the POAC. 

Rekha presented at the inaugural conference of the National Preoperative Association in Nottingham in 2004. 

Rekha has led on several National Patient Safety Alerts (NPSA) for her Trust. She has written Guidelines with reference to these Alerts and many additional Trust Guidelines and PGDs for medicines . Rekha is on the Trust Clinical Pharmacy Board and on the Trust Thrombosis Advisory Panel. 

Rekha has considerable experience in teaching & training and presenting at conferences nationally. She is also a tutor for pharmacy postgraduate certificate students and trains various health care professionals during their attachment to the Surgical Directorate. She has taught on the University College London (UCL) Medical Student Teaching Programme in her Trust. 

Rekha is very passionate about her preoperative assessment work and is always looking at ways to streamline her team’s work and improve patient care. Optimising the use of medicines in hospitals is central to the delivery of high quality patient care. Patients coming into hospitals have many co- morbidities and are on an ever increasing number of medications, including some very complex and costly medicines. Medication errors are still unacceptably common. Seeing elective surgery patients at the POACs, the start of their journey in secondary care rather than later on the wards will go a long way in reducing medication errors and improving patient care and experience.