Our dispensaries are managed by a technical team working alongside a Responsible Pharmacist and have been redesigned to support lean working processes, supplying medication for outpatients, specific inpatient use, discharges and ward stock. Each prescription is clinically checked by a pharmacist to ensure that patients receive the best treatment, advising on the selection, dose and administration for each medication. The final dispensing process is checked by qualified accuracy checking pharmacy technicians supported by pharmacists.
The use of automation within the dispensing process has reduced the amount of time patients are waiting for their medication and supports the use of one-stop dispensing to the wards. This results in medication dispensed at admission being used throughout a patients stay and being available for use at discharge ensuring cost efficiencies and avoiding delays in going home.
Stores & Distribution
We have a separate dedicated stores team on each site accepting pharmaceutical deliveries throughout each day, ensuring stock within the department is maintained at all times. Stores staff are responsible for ensuring deliveries are correct prior to placing them in the pharmacy robot or on the shelves.
The distribution team delivers a stock control service to the wards, where pharmacy staff will ensure agreed stock levels are maintained by weekly ward checks and supplies so that stock medication is always available for patient use.
The pre-packing unit is an unlicensed unit working under the management of the Stores, Distribution and Pre-packing Manager which serves all areas of the Trust. This section of the department fills and replenishes all the emergency boxes used on all three hospital sites as well as a number of outlying clinics and community areas. In addition, the unit sources a number of products fully labelled with instructions for use which are distributed to patients at ward level, departments or out of hours in line with Trust policy.
The Pharmacy department has a lean centralised procurement approach. The procurement team is based at the Heartlands site with representatives on each of the other two sites. They operate under a purchasing for safety policy ensuring that all products sourced are competitively priced and meet EU standards. Orders are processed centrally and receipted on individual sites.
Aseptic Dispensing Unit (ADU)
We have an onsite ADU located within the main hospital building at Heartlands Hospital producing sterile medication for patient use throughout the Trust. This is managed locally by a senior technician and a team of Pharmacy technicians and assistants with Senior Pharmacist support (see Modern Aseptic Dispensing).
Satellite Pharmacy Oncology/Haematology
Working in tandem with Aseptic services we have a satellite Pharmacy based within a ward area at both Heartlands and Good Hope Hospitals, working closely with nursing and medical staff ensuring deliveries of patient treatment for both inpatient and day-case services. At Solihull Hospital, this function is performed from within the main pharmacy.
The department has a dedicated medicine management team working alongside Pharmacists on the wards in completing medicine reconciliation, patients own drug assessments, patient counselling and dispensing for discharge at ward level. The Medicines Management team will ensure that all medication available for patient use whilst an inpatient or at discharge.
The team also supports a number of wards to ensure correct processes and safe storage are maintained in relation to medication (see Ward Based Medicines Management).
The pharmacy team based in MIDRU (Medical Innovation Development and Research Unit) at the Heartlands site consists of pharmacists, registered technicians and clerical staff who together run and maintain a large number of drug trials.
For further information see Medicines Research