UCSF

Robotic pharmacy aims to free the pharmacist, improve medication safety

Automated robots in a new, high-tech pharmacy now prepare medications for UCSF hospital patients with the aim of improving medication safety while freeing UCSF hospital pharmacists and nurses to spend more time caring directly for patients.

According to Lynn Paulsen, PharmD, UCSF Medical Center’s director of pharmaceutical services, there have been no medication errors in the 350,000 doses of medication prepared during the robotic pharmacy’s phase-in, which began in October 2010. “UCSF led the way in training clinical pharmacists, who focus on the patient care rather than the drug products,” said Mary Anne Koda-Kimble, PharmD, dean of the UCSF School of Pharmacy. “Automated medication dispensing (now) frees pharmacists from the mechanical aspects of the practice. This technology, with others, will allow pharmacists to use their pharmaceutical care expertise to assure that patients are treated with medicines tailored to their individual needs.”

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About the School: The UCSF School of Pharmacy is a premier graduate-level academic organization dedicated to improving health through precise therapeutics. It succeeds through innovative research, by educating PharmD health professional and PhD science students, and by caring for the therapeutics needs of patients while exploring innovative new models of patient care. The School was founded in 1872 as the first pharmacy school in the American West. It is an integral part of UC San Francisco, a leading university dedicated to promoting health worldwide.