Robot tech improves the way patients receive medication

Salford Royal has extended the use of PillTime following a successful pilot.

The system ensures patients receive the right medication on time, every time. PillTime dispensary, featuring a robot and optical checker, has been set up in the Trust’s pharmacy department. The robot collates different patient medication and dispenses it in individual, sealed pouches in the order it needs to be taken. Each one is checked by advanced image recognition technology as well as highly-trained pharmacy colleagues to ensure the highest possible level of accuracy.

The roll-out will now extend from the Pendleton Suite to the Trust’s Heartly Green Intermediate Care Unit and then to a second community facility at the Limes Intermediate Care Unit.

The Trust said the benefits include improved dispensing accuracy, fewer medication errors, timely administration to patients, and reduced missed doses.

Nadine Keats, Nurse said “The PillTime pouches have made for efficient drug rounds, a more calm and relaxed atmosphere on the ward, and also enabled tidier and more manageable trolleys. I would like to continue with the pouches rather than revert back to original pack dispensing.”

“Our GDE and Future Digital teams are canvassing the experiences of frontline staff as part of the formal evaluation programme. These views will equip us with a first-hand insight into how we can maximise the future potential PillTime – not just for ourselves but also for the wider NHS. PillTime is the latest innovation to go live as part of our programme of more than 50 world-class projects being developed and delivered by our GDE and Future Digital teams.”