Fall 2020/Winter 2021 - Dr. Paul Lokoff’s ties to MSH run deep. Fresh from the University of Toronto, Dr. Lokoff was working in Southern California when he got the call to join MSH. Missing Canada, he left the sunny beaches for what was back then a tiny hospital in a cornfield and never looked back.
Starting out on day one in 1990, Dr. Lokoff was one of only three anaesthesiologists. Today, as the long-time Chief of Anaesthesia, he has been instrumental in growing a dedicated team of highly talented anaesthesiologists.
Dr. Lokoff has marked many personal and professional milestones over the last 30 years. With the help of fellow staff, he learned to ballroom dance in the hospital auditorium the week before his wedding which was attended by many of his colleagues. And his son was born at the hospital — and is now a resident in anaesthesia.
“MSH has been a huge part of my life,” he says. He considers himself extremely fortunate to be a founding member of such a uniquely supportive and patient-focused culture. And he’s developed many friendships that he deeply values. So much so that his generous colleagues and friends recently recognized him with an MSH Heroes donation through the MSH Foundation.
Dr. Lokoff is very proud of the leading role that anaesthesiologists have played in the evolution of care at MSH. One important initiative is the acute pain service developed 20 years ago, in response to the increasing complexity of post-operative pain. This leading-edge work also led to the development of an opioid reduction strategy at MSH. “With the devastating consequences of the opioid crisis, our team has made a multitude of changes to minimize or eliminate opioid use,” says Dr. Lokoff.
He continues to wear many hats, as a department chief, educator and clinician. And in each of these roles, what he shares with fellow MSH Heroes is an intense focus on the patient.
“I truly enjoy looking after a nervous child, a sick patient or a labouring patient in pain — and doing my best to make their experience the best it can be.”