New labels help Sunderland hospital patients

Sunderland Royal Hospital pharmacy department
Sunderland Royal Hospital pharmacy department
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SUNDERLAND Royal Hospital is improving patient care thanks to new customised labels for drugs.

IT company Episys has been brought in by the city’s Foundation Trust to provide software for the hospital’s pharmacy department.

It will be used to make unique labels for medicines, including chemotherapy drugs, which are manufactured on site.

A spokesman for the hospital said the drugs were different to most as they come in many forms, so clear, concise and accurate labelling is vital to reduce errors and provide the best care for patients.

Rod Beard, principal pharmacist at the hospital, said: “The new system from Episys has enabled us to create clear and succinct labels, which is particularly important in the preparation of chemotherapy drugs.

“Episys provide us with excellent assistance, and allow us the ability to create professional, quality labels with flexible design options.

“We have significantly reduced staff time spent on labelling and batch sheet product by around 60 per cent and have total control of workflow and our processes.”

The Episys Ultimate labelling system was put in place at Sunderland Royal in 2009 to allow the hospital to comply with the requirements of the Medicine and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).

The Foundation Trust then decided to implement it one step further, to include the new labelling system. Mr Beard added: “To comply with the recent medicines directive, we will be adding a 2D Data-Matrix Barcode to our over-labelled packs, which allows unique pack identification.

“The Episys Ultimate solution allows us to produce this barcode.”