Maximizing Central Pharmacy Dispensing Technology
April 2017 - Vol. 14 No. 4 - Page #6

In recent years, hospital pharmacies have increasingly embraced automated storage and retrieval systems. The number of organizations automating their drug storage increased to 36% in 2016, and carousel and robot systems enjoy high satisfaction ratings, with 80% of users rating their automation good or excellent.1

The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center (OSUWMC), a 1,367 bed academic medical center located in Columbus, Ohio, comprises seven hospitals, six of which are located on the main medical center campus. The highly automated main campus has nine pharmacy dispensing areas. In December 2014, OSUWMC opened a new cancer and critical care tower with 276 acute care beds, 75 critical care beds, 80 infusion beds/chairs, and 14 operating rooms. With this expansion, OSUWMC exceeded the capacity of the existing central pharmacy distribution operation in University Hospital. Therefore, in order to safely and efficiently provide medications to the new cancer and critical care tower, the pharmacy team began an evaluation process to identify the types of pharmacy automation required for this new central pharmacy distribution area. Ultimately we chose to implement central pharmacy dispensing carousels and robots, automated dispensing cabinets, smart infusion pumps, IV compounding automation, and IV workflow automation.

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