Objective To assess how pharmacy staff perceived the benefits of coupling robotic dispensing (RD) directly to integrated electronic prescribing (EP) and its impact on their practice at ward level, and to evaluate which features of EP were significant, and their perceptions of coupling EP to the dispensing robot.
Method Qualitative thematic analysis was used. 23 initial themes were identified from semistructured interviews, which, on further analysis, were reduced to 6 main themes which were then further explored by a questionnaire.
Finding 75% (26) responded. There was overwhelming support for the use of this technology to support clinical services. The respondents felt EP plus RD greatly empowered pharmacists, provided better relevant information, had a positive effect on ward relationships and was more efficient. This gave greater job satisfaction by allowing more time for ‘higher skilled’ professional activities. Clinical training was perceived as critical to maximise use of technology.
Conclusions This work identifies how by using EP-RD benefits reach beyond the dispensary to the ward level permitting the pharmacy to add more clinical value to its pharmacy service, thus contributing to better patient care.
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