Your Choice For

Patient-Centered Care

New Technology Protects Against Medication Errors

Medication safety is now high-tech at Gila Regional Medical Center. The hospital has installed a new system that strengthens the commitment to getting the right medication to the right patient.

The system, called Pyxis, uses computerized medicine cabinets and electronic patient profiles that list each patient's medications as approved by a pharmacist. With Pyxis, no medications other than those approved for the patient can be selected.

"This system vastly enhances patient safety," says Pharmacy Director Ray Goellner, M.S, Pharm.D.

Your exact Medicine and Dose

Before Pyxis, medicines were stored in carts that were not controlled by computers. That made it easier for nurses to grab a different medicine. Now, the chance of a nurse selecting the incorrect medication is vastly reduced.

With Pyxis, a nurse signs in to the cabinet with a password and fingerprint scan. The nurse selects a patient's name. The patient's medication list appears, and the nurse selects from this list. Then a drawer opens, giving the nurse access only to that medication.

Staff Has More Time for You

"Pyxis also has improved efficiency in the pharmacy," adds Goellner. Under the old system, a pharmacy technician had to check the inventory of medicines in each patient care area. Pyxis does this automatically; two reports are printed each day so pharmacy staff knows the current inventory and what to stock in the medicine cabinets. This frees more time for pharmacists to work directly with nurses and doctors, ensuring that medicines are being used safely and effectively.

From GRMC Good Health Newsletter Article, Summer 2008