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Dr. Drew Thompson is the 2017 recipient of the President’s Award for Innovation for his contributions to the initiation and development of the Point of Care Ultrasound (POCUS) Program, which is widely considered a standard of care in emergency departments across Canada. Dr. Thompson is a physician in Emergency Medicine at LHSC.
POCUS allows for ultrasound imaging at the bedside, reducing diagnostic uncertainty, limiting radiation exposure, and expediting clinical decisions without requiring a potentially-unstable patient to leave the emergency department for testing. POCUS can also reduce the need for more invasive diagnostic testing and reduces wait times for such testing. As a result, POCUS vastly improves the patient experience and contributes to more efficient access and flow in the emergency department. As one of Dr. Thompson’s colleagues notes, “Not a shift goes by that I don’t reach for the ultrasound in an effort to improve the care I provide for my patients.”
Dr. Thompson is acknowledged by his nominators as an integral figure in the POCUS Program from its beginnings at LHSC 13 years ago. Starting with a single machine, Dr. Thompson grew the program by developing and leading education and training throughout the emergency departments and eventually expanding the program into several departments across the hospital. He is largely responsible for the adoption of POCUS in hospitals across the country. Dr. Thompson is lauded by colleagues and students for the enthusiasm, vision, and countless hours he has contributed to the POCUS Program.