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Roboticized Compounding of Oncology Drugs in a Hospital Pharmacy

Author(s):  Palma Elisabetta, Bufarini Celestino

Issue:  Sep/Oct 2014 - Volume 18, Number 5
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Abstract:  In 2005, the Pharmacy Department of the University Hospital of Ancona began collaboration with the engineers of the Loccioni group in order to realize a fully automated system for the preparation of cytostatic drugs, which could be safe for both healthcare workers and patients. At present, the cytotoxic laboratory of Ancona is equipped with two robots and one Class II biological-safety cabinet. The introduction of the robots in the cytotoxic laboratory has increased both efficiency and safety of the working process. The drug-preparation process begins when the pharmacist confirms the medical prescription (exact posology, modalities of reconstitution), and starts the preparation cycle. The sterility of the preparations is monthly tested in collaboration to the local microbiology laboratory. All preparations’ results were germ-free even after storage at room temperature for two weeks. The dose accuracy is verified by visual and gravimetric independent systems. Drug concentration errors exceeding the limit of 10% fixed by the Italian Pharmacopeia were found only in 1.1% of the preparations. The average dose error was 0.8% (standard deviation 1.7%).

Related Keywords: Elisabetta Palma, PhD, MSN, RN, Celestino Bufarini, PharmD, University of Ancona, Italy, chemotherapy, cancer therapy, worker safety, workplace safety, cytotoxic drugs, biological safety cabinet, automation, automated drug preparation, robot, aseptic compounding, compounded sterile preparations, medication errors, drug contamination, packaging


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