Tuesday 22 June 2010

A pill-popping kiosk?

                        New machine dispenses prescription drugs in minutes  (pic Metronews.ca)

Just like an ATM, but instead of bills, these machines pop out pills.

Developed by PCA Services Inc. the dispensing system has been on test in Canada since early 2009, and according to the Daily Mail, will shortly go on trial in several UK hospitals.

Here’s how it works: The machine makes a scan of the prescription, which is transmitted to the pharmacist at the main PCA site who is processing the order. The pharmacist will approve the order, provide drug information and note possible side-effects, and ensure that it is stocked in the machine, which can hold up to 340 medications.

The drugs are identified through radio frequency identification tags on the product. They are again verified by the remote pharmacist, and then eventually dispensed.

Pharmacy groups and community pharmacists are obviously concerned.
Details of Canadian trials

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