Omnicell Inc (Nasdaq: OMCL), a leading provider of medication management and supply chain solutions that target patient safety and operational efficiency within health systems, has launched its next generation Medimat, the future of retail automated dispensing.
The innovative solution brings together Omnicell’s cutting-edge technology and in-depth knowledge of retail pharmacy workflows to support pharmacies by:
- Supporting patient safety by automating the handling of medication packages, reducing the risk of human dispensing errors
- Improving efficiency and savings
- Freeing up staff from administrative and logistical tasks to spend more time with customers
- Driving business growth opportunities
Enhanced patient safety
Taking the decision to automate and adopt robotic technology is the first step to revolutionising the way retail pharmacies operate. Omnicell’s Medimat next generation solution will make the transition from manual to automated processes easy, seamless, and rewarding. Without technology, patient safety can be compromised through dispensing errors resulting from multiple dispensing processes, time constraints and too many human interactions. Omnicell’s new solution significantly reduces dispensing errors by simplifying the process and driving down the number of human interactions involved in the pharmacy workflow. Omnicell’s team of pharmacy specialists work together with pharmacies to realign workflows and train staff, ensuring the benefits of the robotic solution are felt almost immediately.
Efficient use of time
Pharmacists often end up spending valuable time on back office, administrative and logistical tasks such as unpacking medication, stock management and searching for medication that needs to be picked. These tasks can all be automated with the next generation Medimat, relieving the repetitive process of dispensing, and freeing up staff to spend more time to building relationships with patients and operating at the top of their clinical licence. Pharmacists will know where the drug is within the robot and what quantities are available. In addition, it enables them to track slow moving items and eliminate wasted or out of date stock. This is critical when handling large numbers of prescriptions and will help business to grow as the pharmacy can deliver on a prescription request. As the Medimat generates a real time report on stock usage, the need for manual stock counts is eliminated, saving valuable time.
Omnicell has a wealth of experience when it comes to developing innovative technology; the speed of the next generation Medimat is optimized as each dispense is two movements. Furthermore, Omnicell’s patented suction pads ensure that boxes are not damaged and bottles are not broken during the loading and dispensing process. Inputting medication into the new solution is safer due to its highly effective scan station, while the direct mode enables users to have medication available for immediate dispensing. With an input speed of up to 750 packs per hour, Omnicell’s direct mode is one of the fastest available. The new solution has even greater pack capacity than its predecessor and is available with up to 10 metres of conveyor belt.
Omnicell’s new solution not only improves workflow and efficiency but also offers value for money. Lack of inventory accuracy and control is costing pharmacies money through expired stock and a lack of bulk buying power. Automation, like the next generation Medimat, enables you to keep track of expiry dates and manage medication by FEFO. This wealth of data is helpful when supporting bulk buying high usage medication or negotiating a call-off schedule with medication suppliers. The speed of the robot will allow for more prescriptions to be processed with a higher level of accuracy, meaning that pharmacists can expand their business safely, efficiently, and profitably.
Features of the Medimat include:
- A re-engineered gripper to provide a more robust gripping system
- An increased stock capacity
- New Fill in Door for faster input and FMD scanning process
- Ability to manage part packs via new Fill in Door
- FlexArea shelves to make storage flexible and adaptable
- Ability to manage larger pack dimensions, increasing the number of lines that can be automated
- A modern look and feel, available in colours to match pharmacy branding
Lack of space within pharmacy means many businesses wrongly believe that automation is not an option as staff already have limited space in which to dispense medication. As with Omnicell’s previous robotic dispensing system, the next generation Medimat is available in bespoke sizes and configurations to suit the individual need of any pharmacy.
Commenting on the benefits of Omnicell’s robotic dispensing solutions, Kevin Murphy, Superintendent Pharmacist at Wellbeing Pharmacy Group said: “The output speed of the Omnicell robot is one of the reasons we chose the solution. We’re located in a medical centre and wanted to keep patient waiting time as short as possible and provide a really good level of service for patients so they would choose us for repeat prescriptions.
“We didn’t have space for a fill-in-box, however Omnicell also offer the option of a Fill-in-Door. It’s really simple to use and doesn’t take up much space – you just stack the boxes on the shelves, close the door and the robot does most of the work. One of the main reasons we invested in automation is to get rid of these repetitive tasks so our skilled staff could spend more time with patients”.
“During the Covid pandemic, some of our staff have unfortunately contracted the virus or had to self-isolate or shield so we’ve had times when we have been very low on staff. Without the Omnicell robot we would have struggled to support our patients and stay open.”.
Sara Dalmasso, General Manager and Vice President of Omnicell International, comments; “By enabling pharmacies to save time, money and reduce dispensing errors, Omnicell’s next generation Medimat can help to future-proof a pharmacy business. This exciting new solution provides efficiency, reliability and helps to facilitate a return to more patient-facing care, which are key to retaining and growing a satisfied customer base.”