Key Takeaways from a Recent Pharmacy Survey
PDC surveyed 6,400 Hospital Pharmacy Managers and Directors to get feedback on their priorities and challenges. Below we explore the results and key takeaways of the PDC survey, along with some helpful tips for pharmacy professionals.
Top Concerns Among Hospital Pharmacists
The top concerns identified by pharmacists were labeling, medication and identification errors. HIPAA compliance is also a top concern, with pharmacists looking for simple and effective ways to ensure compliance in their facilities.
Testimony from one Pharmacy Director shows how important it is for pharmacies to have an easy way to protect patient information and remove private information from labels before disposing of them.
PDC Tip: Pharmacies need simple solutions that help staff correctly label medications with ease while remaining HIPAA compliant. A good practice for your facility to stay HIPAA compliant is to use perforated or self-shredding labels to quickly dispose of patient info on IV bags.
Request a free sample of these specialty labels today.
Top Priorities for Hospital Pharmacists
Patient safety and reducing costs are top priorities for the majority of surveyed hospital pharmacists. Pharmacies are also prioritizing improving the way they conduct operations at their facility.
One pharmacist gave additional insight, stating that their pharmacy is looking to reduce reimbursements, prevent understaffing, and increase dispensing.
PDC Tip: To reduce costs at your facility, invest in labels that are designed specifically for pharmacy use. This reduces the need for relabeling, which can keep costs down and save pharmacists time. It also helps to reduce the opportunity for costly errors that could arise during the labeling of medications.
Additionally, hospital pharmacists should look to consolidate suppliers and purchase labels that are on the GPO contracts that align with their overall hospital. Only 51% of survey respondents said it is critical that they purchase labels on a GPO contract, meaning plenty of pharmacists are missing out on taking advantage of low contract pricing and bulk pricing discounts from buying from a single supplier. Learn more about PDC GPO Contracts.
Key Takeaway: Unscannable Barcodes are a Common Issue
Unscannable barcodes on medication labels was the most common error experienced by pharmacy professionals at 63%. Additionally, the most frequently submitted answer for what causes medication labeling errors in pharmacies is that a barcode had an incorrect scan or read (46%). Accurate barcode scanning is critical for hospital pharmacy professionals in order to keep patients safe, avoid medical errors, and keep the facility running smoothly.
PDC TIP: If a medication label comes into contact with alcohol or if the print fades over time, the barcode can lose clarity and scan incorrectly. Quality labels designed for use in healthcare that are smudge-resistant can help avoid this type of error. Additionally, thermal printing is recommended because it provides crisp printing that lasts a long time and ensures readability at all times. Thermal labels can be printed in seconds, and the crisp direct printing means barcodes and patient info won’t fade or smudge.
Key Takeaway: Re-issuing IV Bags Can Be Disruptive
A majority of pharmacists are re-issuing IV bags or medication at least once a month. This could be a tedious process with the high potential to cause identification errors if the labels don’t cooperate.
PDC TIP: A best practice for your facility is to use IV bag labels that can be easily removed in a single piece without any residue when staff needs to re-issue the bags. Renovo™ Pharmacy Labels remain firmly adhered to the medication bag or syringe during use, but then can be removed cleanly when needed. Request a free sample of these specialty labels today.
Pharmacy professionals are looking into how they can address these concerns and improve processes. With pharmacies prioritizing improving patient safety and increasing overall efficiency, it is critical for pharmacists to have the support of a trusted supplier with products designed specifically for pharmacy use. PDC is vigorously researching how to make the lives of pharmacists and other healthcare professionals easier. With our broad range of pharmacy labels and other solutions, we can cater to each of your pharmacy’s needs.
If you’re a hospital pharmacist who can relate to these trends, difficulties and priorities, PDC can help. Reach out today for more information, samples and best practices.
Source: PDC, by Brady