News & Events

ACH Pharmacist Wins Medication Safety Award

April 27, 2010

<?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />Alliance Community Hospital's Pharmacy Operations Supervisor David Wagner, RPH, recently won the 2010 Medication Safety Award presented by the Ohio Society of Health-System Pharmacists.

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Wagner received the honor after being nominated by a fellow colleague for his time and dedication to the medication system he developed for ACH. This is the first year that this award was presented.

 

"When our local area chapter of OSHP asked for nominations, I already had David and the system he developed in mind,†Nichole Thorn said. â€œI felt that the Medication Safety Award best exemplified the dedication and safe medication process David had developed."

 

The patent-pending medication safety system, known as the PMV System (Pharmacy Medication Verifications System), which includes software, took years to perfect and Wagner thanks his pharmacy colleagues for their patience and support.

 

“I had the support of the staff and they've allowed me to tweak the system for about two years now to make it the best it can be,†Wagner said. “Only after using it do you find the small things that could come up and so we needed to work to fix these things along the way.â€

 

Wagner came up with the medication dispensing system idea in 2006 after the ACH pharmacy moved into the new hospital. He started working on the idea at home and began testing at ACH in 2007. Wagner then submitted his idea to the Ohio Board of Pharmacists and waited about 13 months for its approval.

 

Pharmacy technicians use the system by first placing a patient drawer in the machine. Prescriptions are then filled utilizing the accompanying software after scanning a barcode and dropping the medication into the patient drawer. This logs what goes into the order and flags it if anything is incorrect or incomplete.

 

The PMV System is currently used to dispense medication to the hospital's nursing home residents. According to Wagner, about 55-60 percent of hospitals still use cart fill and could therefore benefit from this technology.

 

“This system is so beneficial because it saves at least a couple hours a day of pharmacist time,†Wagner explains. “The machine and software check the medication filling process so there's no need for the pharmacist to hand check every order anymore like in the past. The machine flags the order if anything is possibly off and then a pharmacist will check it before it leaves, but everything is within arm's reach with this set up and really makes the drug cart filling process run so much smoother.â€

 

Wagner came up with the system set up and concept, while a team of Bob Dillon, Larry Bandy and Doug Anderson of Davis Technologies Inc. assisted with the actual building of the mechanism.

 

“I thought that this system was important enough from a safety standpoint alone and wanted to pursue making it happen at ACH,†Wagner said. “Davis Technologies Inc. is  working on another design for me to utilize prescription bags instead of drugs carts so we hope to make that a reality in the near future as well.â€

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