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ePharmacy live across South Island

Monday, 14 September 2020  
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Return to home page editor Rebecca McBeth


An electronic pharmacy management solution is live across the five South Island DHBs, which users say improves regional collaboration and saves them time.

ePharmacy, from DXC, provides full inventory management, dispensing, compounding, and repacking functionality for hospital pharmacy services, and integrates with patient management systems, financial systems, and MedChart prescribing and administration software.

It replaces DXC’s end-of-life software, WinDose. 

A statement from the South Island Alliance Programme Office says the upgrade will allow more efficient and productive ways of working, improved functionality and regional patient information sharing to pharmacy services. 

South Canterbury was the last DHB to go live with ePharmacy in August and is hosted by Southern DHB.

Pharmacy workflows and business requirements have been standardised and aligned across the regional instances. 

South Canterbury pharmacy manager Carolyn Coulter says the system provides the capability to go paperless and be accessed remotely and while the DHB is not using all the functionality yet, this will be particularly useful when on call. 

Sharing information regionally is also important for a secondary hospital which sends a lot of patients to Christchurch for treatment.

“The more records are electronic and can be accessed by different people in different centres, the more helpful it is,” says Coulter.

For Nelson Marlborough Health and West Coast DHB, the project involved ‘on-boarding’ to a Canterbury DHB hosted instance of ePharmacy, which was already live. 

Anna Mitchell, regional ePharmacy programme specialist, says despite project delays due to Covid-19, the go-lives across the South Island went smoothly and involved a real regional collaboration.

“The project teams worked really hard to configure the software, which involved setting up each medicine kept at their pharmacy, testing the software multiple times and implementing it on top of their regular work,” she says. 
“It was nice to share the knowledge I gained with others and learn technical aspects of the software, and also learn how other DHB pharmacies work.” 

Sonja van Alphen, team leader at Nelson Hospital Pharmacy, says the go-live transition was seamless and the new system provides multiple levels of functionality. 

“It’s a better, more collaborative way of working and it’s nice to know we are part of a wider, supportive community of ePharmacy users,”  she says.

If you would like to provide feedback on this news story, please contact the editor Rebecca McBeth.


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