Establishment of a Pharmacogenetics Service Focused on Optimizing Existing Pharmacogenetic Testing at a Large Academic Health Center

J Pers Med. 2020 Oct 3;10(4):154. doi: 10.3390/jpm10040154.


Multiple groups have described strategies for clinical implementation of pharmacogenetics (PGx) that often include internal laboratory tests that are specifically developed for their implementation needs. However, many institutions are not able to follow this practice and instead must utilize external laboratories to obtain PGx testing results. As each external laboratory might have different ordering and reporting workflows, consistent reporting and storing of PGx results within the medical record can be a challenge. This might result in patient safety concerns as important PGx information might not be easily identifiable at the point of current or future prescribing. Herein, we describe initial PGx clinical implementation efforts at a large academic medical center, focusing on optimizing three different test ordering workflows and two distinct result reporting strategies. From this, we identified common issues such as variable reporting location and structure of PGx results, as well as duplicate PGx testing. We identified several opportunities to optimize our current processes, including-(1) PGx laboratory stewardship, (2) increasing visibility of PGx tests, and (3) clinician and patient education. Key to the success was the importance of engaging clinician, informatics, and pathology stakeholders, as we developed interventions to improve our PGX implementation processes.

Keywords: implementation; pharmacogenetics; pharmacogenetics service; pharmacogenomics.