NGPA (Next Generation Pharmacy Automation)
CASI’s Next-Generation Pharmacy Automation (NGPA) is a pharmacy order fulfillment dispensing system designed for high-volume, central fill facilities.
Health system pharmacies rely on central pharmacy fill facilities to improve patient care. Utilizing a comprehensive pharmacy automation solution increases the efficiency of the prescription fulfillment process. This improves medication management, prescription inventory management, which overall improves patient outcomes long term.
What is Central Fill?
- Prescriptions are sent in from the patient’s own pharmacy.
- When the prescription is received, the central fill pharmacy then efficiently dispenses the medicines and checks and labels the individual packages; packs all prescriptions in a patient-specific bag or box; and sorts the prescriptions for transport.
- Once completed, orders are shipped back to the local pharmacy, and the patient then picks them up locally.
CASI’s Pharmacy Automation Technology
- 0% drug cross-contamination through either physical contact or airborne dust.
- 100% pill count accuracy to avoid oral solid dispensing shortages and overages.
- Pattern recognition software to avoid broken and damaged pills.
- Automatic Labeling (flat, flag, or tadpole) Unit of Use boxes and bottles using robots.
- Automatic Document printing, folding, queueing, inserting, and verifying.
- Automatic Bagging of orders using a CASI Automated Retracting Tote (CART).
- Remote QA – pharmacist inspection and approval operation from anywhere in the world.
- Robotic Delivery and Return of pill canisters to and from automation lines.
- A modular design provides for a building block solution affording easy future expansion of capacity.
- The modular design also reduces complexity, increases reliability, and offers redundancy capabilities.
- Modules are equipped with wheels allowing for easy site positioning and future new site re-deployment.
- All modules are “plug and play” (just roll them in, set their feet, attach the feeds, and plug them in).
- The modules are organized in a modular fashion with common Ethernet, air, and power connections.
- All modules make use of a common set of reliable parts, reducing the need for large spares depots.
- Each module is equipped with an Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) to allow for graceful shutdown.
- Orders are filled in a CASI Automated Retracting Tote (CART) that prevents physical access to items.
- Orders have full traceability and event recording throughout the system, which allows easy troubleshooting.
- System logs all operator actions by the user and allows full auditing for the determination of active responsibility.
- Pill canisters are each equipped with a tamper-resistant and tamper-evident auto-locking mechanism.
- Filling modules are equipped with fingerprint recognition devices to restrict access to pill canisters.
- Pill canisters anonymously containing Controlled Drugs are placed in non-disclosed carousel locations.
Patient Order Safety
- During replenishment, pills are assigned and placed into a pill canister with a unique barcode identifier.
- Pill canister barcodes are read and compared continuously; a canister is not used if a mismatch occurs.
- During filling, each pill to be packaged is automatically vision-checked for correct pill form and size.
- Each puck or card carrier has a unique RFID that is tracked and verified during the pill packaging process.
- Each completed pill package is weighed and verified against a calculated expected package weight.
- Each CASI Automated Retracting Tote (CART) has a unique barcode identifier to track orders in progress.
- Each bagged order is automatically weighed and verified against a calculated expected order weight
- Every module utilizing robots has doors that sense opening and automatically shut off robot movement.
- The system implements Emergency Cut Off devices to halt automation equipment in an emergency.
- Energy-efficient and quiet conveyor components turn on and off automatically per zone as needed.
- Modules incorporate redundant components allowing continued operation during a component failure.
- Operator handling of bottles, vials, and cards with exceptions bypasses sealing to allow easy inspection.
- Operator handling of totes with exceptions occurs before automatic bagging to allow easy inspection.
- Automatic bagging can automatically route orders to a bagging module with an appropriately sized bag.
- Pill packaging can automatically select and fill multiple bottle/vial sizes or multiple blister card types.