Turner has helped the pharmacy in the Princes Maxima Centre to have smarter ways of working on personalized medicine. The children-oncology center has the mission to cure each child that suffers from cancer while maintaining an optimal quality of life for them.
The pharmacy has an important role; personalizing the medication of each patient. Not only do the pharmacists need to prepare accurate and precise dosages, they also have to make sure these dosages are available on the right moments. This means that there needs to be well organized logistics, collaborations, and timing. If these factors are executed well, the more time there is left for the young patients and their families.
The healthcare experts at Turner were asked to streamline the medication-process. The main concern was to gain understanding of all the people involved and the process of prescribing and administrating medication. Even though the goals and priorities of the people involved were different from each other, we focused on the common goal: do what is best for the patient.
You can only change such a complex problem if everybody knows what is going on. Which laws and regulations apply? How many prescriptions are prescribed each day and on which moments of the day? How can we predict and anticipate peaks by looking at the number of admitted patients, treatments, and appointments? How do we take into account the shelf life of medication in different environments? We made sure everybody understood the processes and added values, and then started thinking about a smarter way of working.
This way of working was tested in a pilot and the lessons learned were implemented in a larger “implementation-wave”. We invested time and attention to make everybody comfortable with the new processes, regulations and logistics. This is no easy process, as people who work in healthcare are focused on caring for their patients and solving problems that ask for immediate action.
The result of this assignment is a clear production scheme in which all the medication-flows are combined. All kinds of flows are included, such as specific one-time medication, or long-running treatments that depend on examinations of the patient, or daily medication that is prepared in a clean room. Over 500 preparations of medication per day are included in this clear scheme. And all employees that are involved – prescribing, administering, preparing, delivering, checking – know what the rules are, where in the process a medicine is, what the status of the medicine is, and how long waiting times are. This ensures that everybody is calm and collected, but also results in measurable improvements such as less deliveries that are late or less emergency requests.