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immediate release August
Sharon Regional Health System begins using pharmacy robotic system
Sharon Regional Health System began using a state-of-the-art pharmacy robotics
system this week that utilizes bar code technology to automate the dispensing
and delivery of inpatient medications. Sharon Regional is the first hospital in
Mercer County to acquire a pharmacy robotic system. The high performance robot
is being phased in to all areas of the hospital this week after being thoroughly
tested for several weeks on one nursing unit.
The high-speed ROBOT-Rx, manufactured by McKessonHBOC Automated Healthcare, is
the latest robotic system available. It will be used to dispense and deliver more
than 90,000 doses per month at Sharon Regional. The system is widely recognized
in the healthcare industry for its accuracy in the prevention of medication errors.
Hospitals using the robotic system have also achieved reduced inventory and labor
costs, resulting in significant savings.
Sharon Regional's President and CEO Wayne Johnston says, "We are committed to
insuring our patients have access to the newest technologies. Acquiring this system
sets new standards of care by giving our patients access to the most advanced
capabilities in hospital medication administration available in the country."
According to Joyce Yager, R.Ph., FASCP, director of pharmacy services, the technology
demonstrates Sharon Regional's commitment to quality of care by ensuring patient
safety and improving efficiency in the drug distribution process. "Patient safety
is our number one priority," says Yager. "This system allows us to proactively
minimize the possibility of medication errors and puts pharmacists on the floor
with the patients rather than involving them in medication dispensing tasks."
ROBOT-Rx offers all medications in unit dose, bar coded packages that contain
medication specific information such as generic/brand name, expiration date and
lot number. Accuracy and safety are greatly increased with bar coding due to uniformed
labeling and compatibility with point-of- care systems. Compared to a manual picking
system, the ROBOT-Rx is virtually error-free in dispensing medications.
McKessonHBOC Automated Healthcare is a Pittsburgh-based firm that manufactures
and markets pharmacy automation systems that help hospitals reengineer their medication
use process to improve cost savings and increase the quality of care.