Current Report Articles
Pharmacy Director Takes Point on Pandemic Care Logistics

Kevin Oehme (Aug. 27, 2021) – KHA's Health Care Worker of the Year Award highlights hospital employees who have made a significant contribution to the betterment of their hospital. These individuals are nominated for this award because they routinely go above and beyond the call of duty.

Well-planned logistics and efficiencies are key to helping hospitals navigate the COVID-19 pandemic. Kevin Oehme, director of pharmacy for Ascension Via Christi Hospital Manhattan, Inc., has spent several months reviewing and refining all processes related to the pandemic, from tracking personal protective equipment to structuring vaccine clinics to ensure the safety of AVCM staff and patients.

Taking point on pandemic preparedness was Kevin's first leadership role as the director of pharmacy, and he tackled the challenge head-on. Like all hospitals, AVCM experienced many drug, PPE and treatment shortages last year. Kevin constantly monitored the shortages and drug inventory, keeping AVCM in the best position to continue treating patients. He was instrumental in making sure staff were aware of and had the resources to roll out new treatment plans for COVID patients.

When the COVID vaccines became available, Kevin developed a plan to quickly distribute them to the staff and community. Kevin's leadership helped the clinics be efficient and safe for everyone. He worked with community members to establish an algorithm and flow of large vaccine clinics, keeping everyone socially distanced and areas clean. Community members often commented on how smoothly the clinics were run and how safe they felt. During the midst of this very busy time, Kevin pushed to get new dispensing machines installed. He spent many hours prepping and planning logistics, and the transition was seamless thanks to his hard work.

Kevin has given a lot of himself to AVCM and the larger Manhattan community. Due to his strategic planning, vaccine clinics were safe and patient care was top-notch.

Thank you, Kevin, for your high level of multitasking and planning. The Kansas Hospital Association congratulates you on your nomination. Kevin will be recognized, along with other Health Care Worker of the Year nominees, during the KHA Live Convention on Oct 27.
--Shelby Stacy