Sunday, January 17, 2010

Pharmacy checks pills with pix

From the Halifax Chronicle Herald:
A Musquodoboit Harbour pharmacy has scored a North American first with a new pill-checking machine that snaps photos of drug packages before they go out the door.

For the past year, Forest Hill Drug Mart has quietly been conducting trials on a compact medication detection machine developed by Global Factories of Holland.

"It digitally photographs and checks the contents of each packet," drug mart owner Nathan Hill said Wednesday.

"Typically what you have is different levels of checks and balances throughout the prescription process. We would have multiple technicians checking the packaging and then it goes on to a pharmacist to do a final check."

The new machine allows Forest Hill to skip one level of technician checks, saving about 20 hours of work a week.

"It’s 99.99 per cent accurate in finding errors in packaging," Mr. Hill said.

The device reads and photographs small cellophane packages used to distribute individual doses of medications to nursing homes, halfway houses and retail patients. ...more

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