The Medical Toxicology Service offers Weill Cornell providers bedside and telephone consultations throughout the hospital for all patients acutely or potentially poisoned as well as those experiencing the effects of chronic overdoses, withdrawal syndromes, medication errors and adverse drug reactions. Since its inception in October of 2009, the toxicology service has provided over 3000 consultations in the adult and pediatric EDs, internal medicine, critical care, neurology, surgery, burn, psychiatry, and pediatric intensive care units and wards.
The toxicology group now consists of four Weill Cornell faculty members each board certified in both emergency medicine and medical toxicology: Drs. Brenna Farmer, Zhanna Livshits, Joseph Rella, and Dr. Rama Rao who serves as Chief of the Division of Medical Toxicology.
Dr. Farmer has a special expertise in medication safety currently serves as Director of Patient Safety, Division of Emergency Medicine. She also serves as chair of the American College of Medical Toxicology Subcommittee on Pharmacy and Therapeutics where she and Dr. Rao collaborated with the committee on the American College of Medical Toxicology Position Statement on The Role of Pharmacists in the Emergency Department. Both she and Dr. Farmer were awarded New York Presbyterian’s Pharmacy Partner Award. Dr. Rama Rao served on the Medical Toxicology Sub-board for the American Board of Emergency Medicine and is now a consultant for New York Presbyterian’s Second Opinion Program. She is Chair of the Forensic Section Interest Group of the American College of Clinical Toxicology. Dr. Zhanna Livshits is Clinical Director of Opioid Overdose Prevention and serves as an ED expert advisory panel for New York City’s Department of Health and Mental Hygiene on harm reduction in opioid using patients. She also directs the elective in medical toxicology. Regionally, our toxicology attendings work with the teaching faculty at the New York City Poison Control Center and collaborate on educational programs and research with the NYCPCC fellows-in-training and other faculty. All members of our toxicology faculty have contributed to medical student, nursing, and resident education, peer review publications, textbook chapters, as well as regional, national and international lectures on toxicology. In addition to direct patient care, the medical toxicology service is helping to enhance medication safety throughout the institution.