specialty pharmacy distribution

The Issues and Opportunities With Specialty Pharmacy Distribution

Critical Issues Affecting Today’s Specialty Pharmacies

Part One: Safety

Specialty pharmacy distribution is an issue

Do you know that in today’s specialty pharmacies, distribution errors outnumber dispensing errors by two to one? This is an unacceptable number, one that leads to patients not receiving their critical medications and often having to be re-admitted to the hospital.

Although there are various dispensing software solutions that help to automate in-pharmacy workflow, there are not many that help with specialty pharmacy distribution.

This becomes even more of a problem in today’s healthcare arena, where 60% of adults have at least one chronic illness, and 40% have two or more, according to IBISWorld.

Additionally, we’ve seen a 61% growth in hospital-at-home programs that combine in-home and virtual visits with remote monitoring. With this type of care, patients are offered critical care in their own homes.

And with accelerating medication distribution exacerbated by COVID-19 (and an aging population), improving distribution accuracy is more important now than ever.

As we look closely at the problem with specialty pharmacy distribution, we see four critical areas that must be addressed:

  • Safety
  • Visibility
  • Compliance
  • Cost

In this article about specialty pharmacy distribution, (the first of four), we will discuss how critical safety is.

Breaking down the specialty pharmacy distribution workflow

Safety in the specialty pharmacy space comes down to one simple concept… Every patient should receive the right medication, at the right place, at the right time.

Although it may sound easy enough, three specific things can get in the way of execution:

1. Manual Data Entry

No matter how careful humans are when entering addresses, mistakes are unavoidable. When an incorrect address is entered during the specialty pharmacy distribution workflow, medications are either received at the wrong address or not delivered at all. Both outcomes directly impact patient care.

2. Lack of Automation

Even when all the information on the label is correct, lack of automation can lead to having the wrong label placed on the box. This is a double safety threat as one patient doesn’t receive medication, and someone else receives medication not meant for them.

3. Multiple Systems/Workflows

We regularly hear from pharmacy professionals that generic software solutions don’t work for their specialized needs, especially when it comes to working with a number of different workflows. Needing to keep track of prescriptions using multiple systems eats valuable time, is incredibly frustrating, and is almost guaranteed to lead to specialty pharmacy distribution errors.

A clinically-minded prescription shipping solution is key to safety and success

Clearly, specialty pharmacists can benefit from a clinically minded shipping, tracking and compliance solution.

Our pharmacy solution, VPL TrajectRx, is specifically designed to modernize outbound pharmacy operations from start to finish. When it comes to safety, our software solves for all three of the issues listed above.

How it works:

We break the specialty pharmacy distribution process into three zones…

specialty pharmacy distribution

By creating a singular/automated workflow, our specialty pharmacy distribution technology eliminates manual data entry. As a result, it automatically verifies addresses and ensures patients receive the right medications on time every time.

If safety is a concern for your specialty pharmacy, we invite you to learn more about the only cloud-based shipping solution built by pharmacists for pharmacists.

Submit the form below to speak with our pharmacy team about how we can simplify your specialty pharmacy distribution workflow.