Tara Drake, MSHS, PA-C


Adult Congenital Heart Disease

Work and Education

Professional Education

PA, George Washington University, Washington, DC, 2008

About Me

Where did you complete most of your training?

I received my Masters in Health Science, Physician Assistant from The George Washington University in Washington, DC. My congenital heart disease training was on-the-job at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital when I worked on the inpatient step-down unit. I worked with children for almost five years and then made my transition to the Adult Congenital Heart Program at Stanford in June 2013.

What is your special area of interest?Heart Failure. My independent clinic is mainly focused on seeing post-procedure (cath, surgery, etc.) patients, heart failure patients requiring frequent visits, pregnant patients, and urgent visits.

What is the best thing about working in CHD?

The best thing about working in CHD is the patients. Each patient is so different and their story and journey are truly unique. I learn so much from each patient, and continue to learn each day. They are the pioneers in this field, writing history as they live decade to decade. I enjoy hearing their stories about their CHD journey, but also what they have accomplished throughout their lives. They are truly amazing!

What is one thing that you think all patients with CHD should know?

Take ownership of your care. As ACHD providers we are partners in your care; you are the other partner. Take time to learn your heart condition, the surgeries you have had, and what medications you are taking (and why). Please keep us in the loop (if you are headed to an outside ER, if you are having non-cardiac procedures done, etc.). Ask questions, no matter how “silly” you think they are. And keep all of your records!

If you weren’t an advanced practice provider, what would you be?I honestly have no idea! I do love eating and cooking, so I guess I may have gone to culinary school.

Do you have any interesting hobbies or talents or pets?As I just mentioned, I love cooking and eating. I am constantly thinking about what my next meal will be. I also love traveling, whether it is a road trip to many beautiful destinations in California (especially the wine country) or exotic places around the world