New pharmaceutical management system implemented at TC Newman
Western Cape Government Health at TC Newman is currently implementing a new electronic inventory and dispensing programme. The programme referred to as JAC is aimed at improving not only patient experience through shorter waiting times and improved continuity of medication, but also allows the pharmacy staff to predict medication requirements.
According to Mr Ashton Joseph, Chief Pharmacist at TC Newman, “one of the biggest advantages to us is that we have a united system that can tell us where, when and what medication a client received. A further advantage is that we can extract information such as the top 40 medications and improve cost centres.”
The programme is a little time consuming initially, this is because during implementation, all patient details need to be completed in full. However, once this is out of the way, patients will not wait long for medication. In the past all labels had to be handwritten, this was also time consuming; the JAC system simply prints all the labels that a patient requires.
Mr Joseph goes on to say, “In the past packing medication took a while too as one person packed and checked all medication, this has now changed. The system allows an improved flow as the package moves from beginning to end where it is checked by a pharmacist again.”
The top 40 medications that are dispensed remain medicines for chronic diseases of lifestyle, Hypertension (High Blood Pressure), Diabetes and ARV’s. Confidentiality for patients is much improved as only those staff members that use the system require a personal code to access the system; this code enables the supervisor to check who has been on the system and what that person did.
The Chief pharmacist at TC Newman is a born and bred Drakensteiner and did his studies at UWC, he has also completed and MBA and his Master’s degree. When asked what he uses to treat a headache, Mr Joseph laughed and said, “I don’t really like pills, but if I have to take something I fully recommend a paracetamol l like Panado!” Mr Joseph also stated that he is very proud of his staff for their dedicated and collective effort at ensuring the smooth implementation of the system.
The management of TC Newman extend a round of applause to all the patients who have been so very understanding during this implementation and wishes to assure patients that everything should be running smoothly within a month or two.