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Umesh Modi is a chartered accountant, and Pamini Jatheeskumar is a chartered certified accountant at Silver Levene...
  Don Lavoie is alcohol programme manager at Public Health England and Gul Root is lead...
Don Lavoie is alcohol programme manager at Public Health England and Gul Root is lead pharmacist, Health and Wellbeing Directorate, Public Health England
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PrescriptionforExcellenceMay 4 2016

Funding applications are being invited for six pilot schemes involving automation in Scottish pharmacies.

Capital grant funds are being made available under the Evaluation Automated Technology Capital Grant Fund (EATCGF) as part of the Scottish pharmacy strategy’ Prescription for Excellence’. The six pilot schemes identified for this aspect of the strategy will look at dispensing robots and scanning systems.

Bids are being invited for:

  • two standalone automated dispensing robot sites, one involving a community pharmacy with low volume dispensing and one with high volume dispensing, with the robots to be installed before March 31 2017;
  • an automated dispensing robot for a ‘spoke and hub’ operating model to be installed by March 31 2018;
  • three scanning technology sites - a low volume pharmacy, a high volume pharmacy and a ‘spoke and hub’ operation, and all to be installed by March 31 2017.

The first stage of the application bid process is open to all community pharmacies and runs until May 27, with applicants being sent more details about the pilot bid requirements. Bids will be assessed with a shortlist drawn up by the end of July. Those invited to go on to stage two of the bid process will then be required to submit further, costed details by September 23.

Key criteria for assessing applications will be:

  • pilots that will design and implement pharmaceutical care focusing on better patient outcomes
  • pilots that strive towards innovative ways of working and open to welcoming an action research approach in redesigning workflow / processes.

“The fund is primarily aimed at providing automated technology for pilot sites to evaluate and better understand the economics of investing in technology and to investigate the possible service redesign which is enabled through the use of technology,” states the document.

“The fund supports project evaluation pilots across Scotland and is available on a competitive basis to all community pharmacies to apply. There is no restriction on the number of bids that may be submitted by each community pharmacy, however there will only be one pilot running at any one given community pharmacy.”

The Royal Pharmaceutical Society has encouraged pharmacists to apply, saying: “This is a fantastic opportunity for anyone thinking of using innovative technology to change the way they practice with a view to freeing up time for more pharmaceutical care.

“This project would also map to several competencies in the [RPS] Faculty Portfolio such as research, expert professional practice, collaborative working relationships and several more. A great kick start to any portfolio.”

Links:

Scottish Government EATCGF application details

CPS announcement

RPS comment

Scottish Government ‘Prescription for Excellence’ September 2013

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