Inventory improvement and optimization of pharmacy Automated Dispensing Cabinet (ADC)




Marefat, Mehdi

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Abstract Introduction Emerge of Automated Dispensing Cabinets (ADCs) has helped hospital pharmacies to expand their monitoring and controls beyond pharmacy walls. It has provided opportunities for hospital pharmacies to manage the inventory and associated costs in a more effective way however, there are challenges regarding the optimum level of stocked medications. Island Health (aka Vancouver Island Health Authority or VIHA) had implemented several ADCs in rural and remote facilities, where there is no in-house pharmacy to support inventory. Tofino Hospital is the first rural hospital of this kind. Remoteness of Tofino, lack of in-house pharmacy and the number of visitors that this touristic town receives each year makes ADC optimization mandatory. This project applies historical data of demand and supply to find the optimum inventory level for the stocked medication items. This project answers the important question of what is the optimum configuration for each medication item to minimize inventory exhaustion events. Methods To conduct a single echelon inventory optimization, historical data from 30/May/2017 to 31/July/2018 analyzed to calculate daily demands and stocking intervals for a group of 113 stocked medication items. Then a standard inventory management formula applied to create a predictive model to calculate the re-order point and safety stock for a selected group of 52 medication items. The calculated variables compared with current settings of each medication. In addition, system reports examined for incorrect system settings, expired medications and medication items that showed no trace of use during the observation period. The most and least demanded medication items identified. Microsoft Excel and Python used for calculations and visualizing the results. Conclusion Comparing results with the current system settings revealed that the ADC were overstocked for the studied group of medication item however; stock-out events were recurring. Measuring responsiveness of supporting pharmacy to system “refill” messages, showed that delays in restocking medication items is the reason for stock-outs. The calculated re-order point and safety stock for each medication item along with other recommendations prepared for supporting pharmacy.



Automated Dispensing Cabinet, Inventory Optimization