How Automation Affects Medical Application Solutions For Drug Delivery

Ordinary pharmacies can fill hundreds of prescriptions every day. This demand can put a lot of pressure on pharmacists and their staff to maintain adequate staff levels throughout the day while still serving customers without allowing long lines. In addition, the right drug must be given in the right dose with the right number of doses while the documentation must be accurate and complete. In the midst of all these activities, pharmacists must be able to offer consultations to patients and screen for potential drug interactions.

With such full plates, automation in medical application solutions could provide a major boost to pharmacy accuracy and customer service. Automatic pill dispensing robots have been designed and developed to provide such assistance.

Automation In Pharmacy

Automated pill dispensing helps ease the workload at the pharmacy and better allows its staff to focus on other tasks. Current technology offers 99.7% counting and labeling accuracy, allowing staff to leave the robot running with minimal supervision. A series of high-efficiency, high-torque DC micro motors and DC gear motors enable the entire operation to run quickly in the limited pharmacy space.

Technology Supporting Medical Application Solutions

The drug dispensing technology can store up to 200 of the most frequently prescribed drugs and successfully fulfill all types of orders from pills to unit use drugs such as lotions and ointments. To meet the needs of the pharmaceutical industry, technology must meet a number of criteria.

The overall goal was to create a machine that could be “plug and play”, requiring no modification or complicated setup by pharmacists other than storing medicine. All units must conform to the standard dimensions of the pharmacy and its shelving unit mounted on a standard wall plug. The actual counting unit must be capable of accurately tracking doses and a barcode scanning system is used to ensure accuracy in labeling. Cross-contamination of different drugs should be avoided by using separate cells and channels for each drug.

The Solution – DC Micro Motor

The whole system works from the use of only four DC powered micro motors. Instead of having 200 separate motion systems, the only moving parts are the mini gantry crane, gripping device and actual eject action. This allows the system to meet its goals of simplicity and low power usage. Each motor must be extremely compact while still providing enough power to move a large number of large pills; The standard 1-inch DC micro motor fits the bill while still being able to power a wall outlet.

The modular design of the DC gear motor also allows a number of accessories to be added to basic functions for special needs. High-volume pharmacies can take advantage of batch loading, which first fills the holding tank with a quantity of medication ready to be disposed of on demand. The same motor technology allows these medical application solutions to match the same design mentality.

Overall, today’s advances in medical technology help assist healthcare providers in offering the highest level of care.

Chris Harmen is a writer for MicroMo Medical Solutions, a leading medical industry partner providing  DC micro  motors   and  DC gear motors  for medical application solutions.

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