Robot to hand out prescriptions

PATIENTS queuing for medicines in west Suffolk will soon be served by a robot.The robot will be installed at West Suffolk Hospital's refurbished pharmacy once works there are complete.

PATIENTS queuing for medicines in west Suffolk will soon be served by a robot.

The robot will be installed at West Suffolk Hospital's refurbished pharmacy once works there are complete.

The hospital's board of directors have agreed to spend £1.63m on the project.

The new unit will be built on the site of the old pharmacy store and will bring all of the hospital's pharmacy services, which are currently spread over four sites, into one area.


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Work on the project, which is due to start next year, will include creating a modern sterile production facility and new inpatient and outpatient dispensary.

The robot will memorise where it has stored drugs and then retrieve them when they are needed.

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Hospital bosses claim the robot will increase efficiency by saving time which would otherwise be spent by staff locating the drugs by hand.

“This new, larger pharmacy will greatly improve the efficiency of the service which we can offer,” said Gwen Nuttall, executive chief operating officer at the hospital.

“Creating the new unit also gives us the opportunity to invest in some of the latest technology - which will again help save staff time and boost the service which we offer to patients.

“This investment shows the trust's commitment to providing excellent services in the future and, taken alongside the £1.2m set aside for our new endoscopy unit, brings our total spend on improving the hospital site to nearly £3m.

“We are confident this money will make a real difference and will ensure the hospital is well positioned to continue to provide excellent care long into the future.”

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