Synergy Medical started as a small team of top engineers and programmers in 2004. Each member of our team brought a unique set of skills to the table–skills that included robotics, software engineering, principles of pharmacy, and creativity that was out of this world. Through this unique collaboration, our first SynMed® system was created. This blog goes into greater detail of the history of Synergy Medical and shows how our suite of pharmacy automation solutions came to be!
SynMed® XF Brought to Market
In January of 2008, we celebrated a huge milestone after four years of hard work: The very first SynMed® XF system was installed in a high-volume pharmacy in Montreal. The SynMed® XF is a robotic machine that dispenses solid oral medications in blister card formats in lieu of pharmacy staff doing it by hand. This revolutionary technology was unheard of at the time, even though thousands of prescriptions were dispensed in blister packs daily in Quebec.
That same year, three additional pharmacies acquired a SynMed® XF system. The observations and feedback from the pharmacies that acquired the SynMed® XF system early on allowed for us to further improve the system’s performance and prepare for further expansion.
By the time 2009 arrived, the first drugstore chain had purchased and installed a SynMed® XF system with the goal of centralizing production for several of their pharmacies. The year ended on a high note with 15 more pharmacies following suit. The need for an efficient and accurate dispensing system also rose in the United States and in 2010, we made our first sale to a US-based pharmacy.
Synlmage is Introduced
In 2011 the SynMed® system had been installed in over 60 different pharmacies of all different sectors. In addition, we developed SynImage, a database of high-resolution images of oral solid medications. SynImage allows our pharmacy customers to print color images of all the medications contained in the blister pack directly on the patient label. This and other features of the SynMed label provide practical reference information for the benefit of both the customers and the pharmacy staff.
ISO 9001:2008 Certification
2012 was a critical year for us as over 100 pharmacies had gotten the SynMed® system installed in both the United States and in Canada. This was also the year that we initiated the process for obtaining the ISO 9001:2008 certification.
The ISO 9001:2008 specifies requirements for a quality management system where an organization
Needs to demonstrate its ability to consistently provide a product that meets customer and applicable statutory and regulatory requirements, and
Aims to enhance customer satisfaction through the effective application of the system, including processes for continual improvement of the system and the assurance of conformity to customer and applicable statutory and regulatory requirements.
With this quality management certification, our operational practices are officially formalized, enabling us to better serve our customers and be as safe as possible while continuing to innovate.
SynMed® Assist Introduced
2015 was another big milestone year–this was the year that the SynMed® Assist module was developed. This allowed us to serve our customers better with improved safety measures and increased efficiency.
The SynMed® Assist (SMA) module further secures the production process. Before a SynMed® machine begins production, the SMA interface helps guide pharmacy technicians to accurately position exception drugs through the use of touchscreen and barcode readers. The SynMed® Assist module is included with each robot purchase. It is also available for standalone purchase to improve manual production, with credit being offered toward the purchase of a full SynMed® automation system when the time is right.
SynMed ULTRA Makes its Debut
The increasing demand for our products expanded into the U.K and Synergy Medical Europe, Ltd. was established in 2016. After three years of development, and 18-months of piloting, the SynMed® ULTRA was released in Chambly, Quebec in 2017. What sets the SynMed® ULTRA apart is that it is three times faster than the standard SynMed® XF system and is enhanced for high-volume environments. It remains our proven pharmacy automation technology with a customizable adherence labeling system, the ability to produce single and multi-dose blister card options, advanced reporting capabilities, and unmatched service and support.
In addition, 2016 marked 300 SynMed® systems being installed in North America and Europe. Shoppers Drug Mart, Canada’s largest drugstore chain integrated SynMed® technology into its central-fill blister pack operations and saved, and continues to save, millions of dollars annually. The number of SynMed® employees reaches over 100.
We also obtained our ISO 9001:2015 certification in 2017.
ISO 9001:2015 is an international standard dedicated to Quality Management Systems (QMS). It outlines a framework for improving quality and a vocabulary of understanding for any organization looking to provide products and services that consistently meet the requirements and expectations of customers and other relevant interested parties in the most efficient manner possible. The QMS is the aggregate of all the processes, resources, assets, and cultural values that support the goal of customer satisfaction and organizational efficiency. First published in 1987, the latest iteration (ISO 9001:2015) replaces ISO 9001:2008.
Scaling for Growth
In 2018 we were chosen as the automation partners of CVS/Omnicare, Guardian Pharmacy, and McKesson, and 100 more SynMed® systems were installed globally. Demand increased all over the world and major investments were made to enhance our SynMed® production lines. In 2018 we transitioned to lean manufacturing and introduced the Kaizen and 5S production methods to ensure that we could manufacture with even more efficiency and flexibility, paving the way for further innovation and improvements to our technology.
Key Benefits of Working with the SynMed® Systems
Today, in 2021, we celebrate another huge milestone: 500th SynMed® XF and 100th SynMed® ULTRA were manufactured and installed this year. There are many benefits of working with SynMed® products. Some of the key benefits include:
- Increased accuracy and safety
- Increased speed
- Better client medication adherence
- Greater scalability for large volume pharmacies, and
- Greater peace of mind for the pharmacists who use our technology
SynMed® systems seamlessly integrate with your pharmacy’s existing management systems and are compatible with over 30 different types of blister cards. Further, SynMed® technologies are safe and easy to use. Production speed increases by up to 15x in independent pharmacies where a SynMed® system is installed, and our technology gives pharmacies the opportunity to:
- Bring in more revenue
- Sync patients’ medications
- Improve their Medicare star rating
- Provide better customer service, and
- Grow their pharmacy business
Contact us today to learn more and to see how easy it is to get started!