New sterile compounding robot in Carilion pharmacy

ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ) - There's a new tool helping pharmacists mix medicines at Carilion Clinic.

WDBJ7 photo

Meet Carilion's Sterile Compounding Robot. It mixes medications, puts it into a syringe, and inserts medicine into an IV bag.

"We recently purchased two robotic devices, self-contained devices with robotic arms that prepares IV medications for our patients," Cheryl Boone, Pharmacy Admixture Manager at Carilion Clinic, said.

Boone oversaw the implementation of these two robots in the hospital's pharmacy in August. She says this robot is the only one like it in our region and the second in all of Virginia. The robotic arm mixes medicine like a human would, but there are some key differences

"It's very precise, so it delivers the exact med[icine] the exact same way every time," Boone said.

Eliminating any chance of human error.

"It's multi-factorial. Safety is one, efficiency is another, and the other thing is accuracy," she said.

These robots also help Carilion pharmacists make better use of their time.

"If I can get the robots to produce this, I can allocate resources to do other things that are much needed in our environment," Boone added.

And the robots save the hospital money without removing any jobs.

"It gives us a mechanism to prepare our products ahead of time, where before, we were paying companies to make those products for us, and we had to wait on them," Boone said.

Now, Boone says the pharmacists have more control over the medicine.

"That's the biggest difference, is I'm able to make and meet patients' needs and have that product available," she said.

Copyright 2019/WDBJ7. All rights reserved.