It is important to carefully consider the expected benefits when contemplating the step toward pharmacy automation, . Because of the considerable investment of effort and time, it is wise to prioritize and plan the steps according to the greatest potential benefit and needs.
One key benefit is the reduced risk of costly and dangerous errors in filling prescriptions. Electronic records can be cross checked and quickly searched to accurately match the patient records and the prescribed medications.
A well designed system can help the pharmacist ensure that the prescription is filled exactly as the doctor intended. It can also help to identify possible interactions with other medications the patient may already be taking.
By automatically keeping track of inventory, electronic records can help the pharmacy realize cost savings from increased efficiency. The system can determine how soon a particular inventory item will be depleted, the next shipment can be ordered no sooner than necessary, but in time to avoid running completely out. This helps to optimize cash flow without endangering the ability of the pharmacy to fill prescriptions as needed by customers.
Another benefit of automation is improved efficiency and speed in all areas of pharmacy operation. This increased efficiency may enable the pharmacy to run properly with fewer staff hours, cutting down on the expect of payroll dollars and to pay for overtime expenses.
Improvement of service and a lower waiting time can improve customer relations and increase how many customers come back to you for more business. The days are gone when customers will put up with being told to come back in an hour or longer to pick up their medications.
Busy customers must be able to complete the transaction on the spot so they can be on their way. Other improvements that customers like are being able to use an automated Internet or telephone ordering system so that their prescriptions will be ready to pick up without waiting and when the customer needs them.
Pharmacy management is a operation with many facets, involving customers, prescribing medical experts, pharmacy technicians and pharmacists. Each of these roles has apart to play in implementing a pharmacy automation plan. Benefits of a well planned implementation can be observed at every stage of the process.
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