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General and Risk Management, Patient Safety (including: medication errors, quality control)
Seven-year experience using automated cabinets within an onco-haematology department
  1. M. Cillo,
  2. V. Del Pizzo,
  3. E. Medugno,
  4. C. Trezza
  1. 1U.O.C. Funzione Coordinamento farmaceutico ASL Salerno, Italy
  2. 2Pharmaceutical Program ex ASL Salerno 1, Italy
  3. 3Pharmacist Hospital Umberto I


Background Managing of hospital supplies, within a complex trust such as ASL Salerno 1, requires an enormous expenditure of human and economic resources. The absence of a computerised system for checking and managing the logistic flows may generate waste and increase the risk of items obsolescence.

Purpose To use the latest logistic management technologies for the rationalisation of costs through logistic processes optimisation.

Materials and method In 2004, 27 automated cabinets were installed within the wards and operating rooms of five hospitals. The onco-haematology ward was the reference department due to the high volumes of high cost drugs. To evaluate the economical and organisational benefits achieved after 7 years of use, the authors used reports from a central server placed in the hospital pharmacy and connected to the automated cabinets.

Results Economical reports have outlined a reduction of 30–40% of economic stock value for a sample group of drugs, steadily used within the onco-haematology department. Management reports allowed a reduction of stock within the ward, through the evaluation of items turnover rates and the consequent redefinition of the minimum stock value.

Conclusions The implementation of new technologies allows the real optimisation of resources through a punctual check of main hospital logistic activities. The cooperation of health personnel facilitates the achievement of excellent results. In 2001 the onco-haematology ward required the installation of another automated cabinet to extend the benefits so far achieved to medical device management.

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