Here at PDS, we take pride in highlighting some of our incredible exhibitors. We know these companies have the potential to revolutionize pharmacies just like yours through their products and services. We’re excited to introduce RxSafe. Read on for their blog post about pouch vs. blister in a COVID world.
This year has been full of changes and challenges for both patients and pharmacists. Coronavirus has increasingly led to many patients preferring “no-contact” or “touchless” services.
Independent pharmacists can reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission by limiting contact between staff and patients. Listen to Kyle Lomax and Traci Bayer, RxSafe customers, explain how they are meeting this new “contactless” demand.
Will “Touchless” be the Norm?
When the pandemic first started, many people thought it would only last a few weeks. Since then, the rapid and sustained spread of the virus has increased patients’ desire for limited contact, especially with healthcare professionals.
It is clear that this pandemic will have a lasting impact on the way patients interact with pharmacists. Patients are likely to use pharmacies that offer pouch packaging and “no-contact” delivery services.
“Our delivery has almost quadrupled,” says Lomax. “I think that our commitment to this wide radius of delivery has really made us stand out in our role, especially in our rural communities.”
Even after the widespread distribution of the COVID vaccine — which will take the better part of a year — patients may be more likely to limit their contact in order to avoid any type of virus or illness.
Why is Pouch Packaging Safer?
Traditional vial filling involves many touch points that increase the risk of transmission. Even after the prescription leaves the pharmacy, there are many more touch points that occur with consumption. William Holmes, CEO of RxSafe, details how quickly the number of touchpoints can grow with traditional vials.
“Let’s presume now a family member might be assisting someone with opening and closing their vials, that’s 30 times a month that vial gets opened and closed and sometimes pills get poured out into a hand and then the bulk poured back,” explains Holmes. “With each touch, you’re increasing the risk of disease transmission.”
On average, there are 317,000 touch points per 1,000 patients using the manual card fill system. Using an automated pill packager reduces the touchpoints to approximately 1,140 touch points.
Pouch packaging automation, such as the RapidPakRx, can drastically reduce touch points. When consuming their medications, patients just have to tear open one pouch. Also, pouch packaging allows for a 31-day script to be filled, decreasing contact between patients and pharmacy staff.
“Even during COVID, we’ve had very few people go without their medications,” says Bayer, “because their prescriptions are ready almost a week before they’re due.”
Need additional information?
Learn more about how you can create efficient operations in the midst of COVID with the PDS COVID Optimization Program. You can also get a sneak peek of the latest PDS member town hall to hear more about how independent pharmacies are adapting their operations to best serve their patients through COVID.