Medication Safety

Thinking about a better Automated Dispensing Unit (ADU)

Automated Dispensing Units (ADUs), also referred to as Automated Dispensing Cabinets (ADCs), are nothing new to hospital pharmacy. Over 80% of hospital pharmacies use ADUs. The most common is a product from Cardinal called Pyxis MedStation. Others include Omnicell SinglePointe, McKessen AutoDose-Rx and medDISPENSE (part of Emerson Electric Co.). Currently Pyxis is the clear front runner, […]

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Barcode symbologies….what’s in your pharmacy.

I had a brief exchange with a colleague a few days back and the subject of where manufacturers were headed with barcoding came up. It’s an interesting discussion. As mentioned in a previous post the number of available barcode ready, unit-dosed medications has been slowly shrinking. As manufacturers work with government agencies and pharmacy organizations […]

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Even the best things can be improved.

I had the opportunity to speak with a nice young lady from Talyst this morning about extending our barcoding system to our pharmacy satellites. She had great insight into what we wanted to do and offered some very helpful tips. The conversation took an interesting turn when she asked me how I liked the system […]

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Local anesthetic allergies.

This has nothing to do with pharmacy technology, but I thought it would be worth posting. Questions about cross reactivity of one local anesthetic to another don’t come along often, but when they do it’s never easy to formulate a quick answer. Lucky for me I’m an electronic pack-rat and saved a small drug information […]

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Tablet recognition for safe dispensing…why not?

I recently spied a Twitter post regarding a “pill geometry” database. The idea of a database that houses the geometry of prescription tablets piqued my interest and sent my brain into overdrive. I don’t think that was the intention of the Twitter post, but it jump started by brain nonetheless.

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Safest and most efficient distribution model

Cardinalhealth.com: “The findings of this analysis demonstrated that in a decentralized medication distribution model, as the percentage of medications in an automated dispensing cabinet (ADC) is increased, there is a direct correlation with: Decreased time to initial dose Decreased missing doses Decreased pharmacist and pharmacy technician labor Decreased non value added nursing activities Increased predictability […]

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Pharmacists aren’t completely worthless after all.

An article in the most recent issue of Archives of Internal Medicine reports the results of adding a pharmacist to a health care team to offer up expertise on appropriate use of medication in heart failure and hypertension. The results showed a 35% reduction in adverse drug events, a 48% reduction in preventable adverse drug […]

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Digital Medicine Article in Business Week

A Business Week article this week took a look at the current state of electronic medical records (EMRs) and technology in healthcare. The author managed to deliver a mixed message without clearly differentiating between electronic medical records and patient safety issues. The article clearly focuses on the negative.

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Adverse Drug Event Occurences

I’ve been working with a group here on a Failure Mode and Effects Analysis (FMEA) for our bar coding medication administration project (called MAK –Medication Administration checKing by our vendor, Siemens Medical ). The benefit to implementing such as system is to significantly reduce the number of errors that occur during medication administration in hospitals each year.

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