There’s a lot of weight on the shoulders of independent pharmacists. No doubt the Coronavirus outbreak has intensified the pressure, but the concerns were already mounting long before COVID-19 was recognized as a worldwide pandemic.
According to the Institute of Medicine and the National Research Council, 27 other countries have a longer average life expectancy than the U.S., much of it attributable to greater obesity, diabetes, and cardiac events. As such, it’s unsurprising to learn that medication therapy management for our older populations is growing more complex every year.
Increasingly, pharmacists carry the burden. Yet, they no longer have to do all the heavy lifting.
SynMed®: an investment in automated blister-card medication preparation that’s right on the money
The numbers say it all: 51% of people over the age 65 take at least five different prescription drugs regularly, with as many as one-in-four taking as many as 19 pills per day. With that much going on, it stands to reason that compliance suffers. For example, according to CVS, 75% report being non-adherent in one or more ways, including 57% who admit forgetting altogether.
As a result, the annual cost to the U.S. economic system has been estimated at approximately $100 billion.
That’s quite a punch. But, for more than a decade, SynMed has been developing the automated tools that have helped independent pharmacies punch back. Starting with its first installation in January 2008, SynMed’s blister card automation has made the difference in prescription packaging and fulfillment in hundreds of retail drugstores and independent pharmacies around the country.
The right medications to the right patient at the right time
No doubt the time for being proactive is now. SynMed’s automated robot system has proven effective in preparing and dispensing multi-dose blister packs as part of a pharmacy-led medication adherence and management regimen. Here’s a small sample of what SynMed brings to the service counter:
When life gets easier, lives get better. Compared to manual production that carries a 5-10% error rate, the SynMed system is 99.98% accurate and exponentially faster—fully capable of producing up to 100 multi-dose and 200 single-dose blister cards per hour. More importantly, studies show patients who use blister packs take the prescribed dose 97% of the time in contrast to just 61.2% of non-blister pack users.
Safety and security in one interface. By integrating scanning and reference points at several production and verification stages, SynMed ensures simple and thorough control. As instructions are received from the management system, the robot automatically selects, counts and places meds in the corresponding blister packs; in turn, leaving the pharmacist more time for face-to-face consultation with patients.
The optimal solution for pharmacists. The SynMed system integrates smoothly with existing pharmacy management software and eMAR systems, and is compatible with more than 40 different varieties of blister packs. Even better, containers can be easily calibrated onsite without wasting any additional time or money. Barcode/biometric scanning and on-screen prompts ensure responsible, error-free production.
Practically every pharmacist has wondered aloud what they could do with another pair of hands. In that sense, the SynMed automated blister-pack production system has the potential to multiply that idea by the dozens.
The extra help can go a long way in beating back the pandemic.