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Hospital Robots Cut Hospital Pharmacy Bill

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http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-tayside-central-11552610

Bosses at a new £300m hospital in central Scotland say pharmacy robots have cut errors and costs by £700,000

A robotic pharmacy has improved safety and saved money at a new Scottish hospital, according to hospital bosses.

Managers at the Forth Valley Royal hospital in Larbert said a £400,000 automated pharmacy has saved £700,000 off the hospital's drugs bill.

They said the system had freed up staff time to care for patients at the new £300m hospital.

Lead pharmacist Jann Davidson said the three robots had also cut dispensing errors.

She said: "We've been able to reduce our stockholding quite considerably.

"It's also reduced errors at the point of picking and dispensing and our staff are now able to work up beside the patients, checking their medicines as patients come into the hospital."

Drugs being delivered to the hospital are tipped into a giant hopper.

A conveyor belt moves them along to a machine which reads the barcodes.

Three robots then stack them onto shelves, according to a system designed for the robots and known only by them.

"The packs aren't stored in an A-Z way, they're just placed to make the best use of space and the robot understands which packs are used the most and places them accordingly," added Ms Davison.

That might seem ripe for disaster, but Jann assures me there are back-up generators and it would take a catastrophic failure to stop all three robots working.

I wonder how many jobs have been lost to the robots? Do humans stack the shelves for the robots to pick the medicines from?

Am I reading this wrong, but surely the saving is £300k as the system cost £400k and saved £700k in pharmacy bills unless there have been other savings like less staff needed or instead of pharmacists you just need shelf stacker's to top up?

Yearly there might be bigger savings but how much does a system like this cost to maintain per year? If electric prices go up then what?

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This is the future, ideally this should free up people from mundane tasks and allow us to do more fulfilling things.

I'm glad the days of working at the coal face with a pick and shovel are gone from the UK.

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http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-tayside-central-11552610

I wonder how many jobs have been lost to the robots? Do humans stack the shelves for the robots to pick the medicines from?

Am I reading this wrong, but surely the saving is £300k as the system cost £400k and saved £700k in pharmacy bills unless there have been other savings like less staff needed or instead of pharmacists you just need shelf stacker's to top up?

Yearly there might be bigger savings but how much does a system like this cost to maintain per year? If electric prices go up then what?

It's ****** - they also have little robots that run around the hospital delivering medications and supplies using specially built ducts. The whole lot broke down not long after opening and had to be sent back to GERMANY for repair.

This BS is what happens when a private contractor is given free rein with public cash.

Nu-******ING-labour at it's best.

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they sound like made up figures, or bad journalism, the hospital has hardly been open a year, so the saving of £700k seem unbelievable.

I think it's a good idea, there will still be jobs for pharmacists, doing pharmacy things instead of shelf stacking/dispensing.

also the robots can provide a 24hr service.

i'm not too sure how it will affect house prices in Larbert though. a quick look at rightmove shows that there is a lot of over priced new build detached houses that people are trying to sell for £300k+. For a scheme in Larbert! they are clearly having a laugh. but also there some nicer properties with a bit of character.

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Am I reading this wrong, but surely the saving is £300k as the system cost £400k and saved £700k in pharmacy bills unless there have been other savings like less staff needed or instead of pharmacists you just need shelf stacker's to top up?

Yes I read it as a one off charge of 400k and a yearly saving of 700k.

Technology has been improving constantly for decades, and while jobs have been destroyed in certain areas, jobs are created in certain other areas. This is just another example of technological progress. If you embrace the changes then you will thrive, and if you ignore and avoid technological improvements then your businesses will go bankrupt and you will end up on the scrapheap.

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http://www.bbc.co.uk...entral-11552610

I wonder how many jobs have been lost to the robots? Do humans stack the shelves for the robots to pick the medicines from?

Am I reading this wrong, but surely the saving is £300k as the system cost £400k and saved £700k in pharmacy bills unless there have been other savings like less staff needed or instead of pharmacists you just need shelf stacker's to top up?

Yearly there might be bigger savings but how much does a system like this cost to maintain per year? If electric prices go up then what?

This is an only way how to get manufacturing and services from China and India back to Europe ...

500 years ago 80% of population worked in agriculture. Now about 4%. Do you really miss the old good times ???

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http://www.bbc.co.uk...entral-11552610

I wonder how many jobs have been lost to the robots? Do humans stack the shelves for the robots to pick the medicines from?

Am I reading this wrong, but surely the saving is £300k as the system cost £400k and saved £700k in pharmacy bills unless there have been other savings like less staff needed or instead of pharmacists you just need shelf stacker's to top up?

Yearly there might be bigger savings but how much does a system like this cost to maintain per year? If electric prices go up then what?

are you really missing a putting of the medication to the shelves? Not a most excited job in a Universe ...

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It's ****** - they also have little robots that run around the hospital delivering medications and supplies using specially built ducts. The whole lot broke down not long after opening and had to be sent back to GERMANY for repair.

This BS is what happens when a private contractor is given free rein with public cash.

Nu-******ING-labour at it's best.

Automation doesn't work, then?

New-fangled nonsense.

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It's ****** - they also have little robots that run around the hospital delivering medications and supplies using specially built ducts. The whole lot broke down not long after opening and had to be sent back to GERMANY for repair.

This BS is what happens when a private contractor is given free rein with public cash.

Nu-******ING-labour at it's best.

WTF are you on? It was on Radio 5 this morning before 7. These robots are only storing and collecting the drugs in the storage room. There is still a human pharmacist in the loop. The guy from the hospital explained it like this:

- Doctor in ward makes prescription - electronically as opposed to the old paper note system.

- Prescription pops up on screen of pharmacist; they check it is ok, then pass it on to the robots to collect from store room.

- Prescription is picked up by a human and delivered by hand as per before.

These 'robots' are only doing the shelf-stacking bit. New drugs come in - they put it on the shelf. Prescription comes in - robot takes what it needs off the shelf. It sounds a lot like the automated warehouses that delivery companies use.

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These 'robots' are only doing the shelf-stacking bit. New drugs come in - they put it on the shelf. Prescription comes in - robot takes what it needs off the shelf. It sounds a lot like the automated warehouses that delivery companies use.

How does that save £700,000?

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These 'robots' are only doing the shelf-stacking bit. New drugs come in - they put it on the shelf. Prescription comes in - robot takes what it needs off the shelf. It sounds a lot like the automated warehouses that delivery companies use.

How do the robots restock the shelves? Do new drugs come in on pallets and then the robots scan the pallet to work out where the drugs go?

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Yes I read it as a one off charge of 400k and a yearly saving of 700k.

Technology has been improving constantly for decades, and while jobs have been destroyed in certain areas, jobs are created in certain other areas. This is just another example of technological progress. If you embrace the changes then you will thrive, and if you ignore and avoid technological improvements then your businesses will go bankrupt and you will end up on the scrapheap.

So what's the yearly maintenance and service contract? How often do parts fail in the system?

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So what's the yearly maintenance and service contract? How often do parts fail in the system?

Good questions. Although they mean nothing unless you compare them to the way it previously worked. For example:

What's the yearly and ongoing cost of providing a final salary pension scheme for 'x' prescription dispensers?

How often do people take holidays / sick / maternity / paternity leave?

What's the overtime cost of covering for holidays / sick / maternity / paternity leave?

What's the training cost of workers dispensing prescriptions?

I'd rather have the full picture before going 'ooh, robots - scary!'.

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Good questions. Although they mean nothing unless you compare them to the way it previously worked. For example:

What's the yearly and ongoing cost of providing a final salary pension scheme for 'x' prescription dispensers?

How often do people take holidays / sick / maternity / paternity leave?

What's the overtime cost of covering for holidays / sick / maternity / paternity leave?

What's the training cost of workers dispensing prescriptions?

I'd rather have the full picture before going 'ooh, robots - scary!'.

Could get even more complicated if you then start factoring the social costs of people being made redundant by technology. Although this has always been the case.

Plus what's the cost when the robot picks up the wrong prescription the pharmacist is on auto pilot and doesn't double check? Once people get complacent are more errors likely?

Plus what's the cost of replacing the system if the supplier decides to up the contract costs of using it? Once it's installed have they got a monopoly?

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Managers at the Forth Valley Royal hospital in Larbert said a £400,000 automated pharmacy has saved £700,000 off the hospital's drugs bill.

They said the system had freed up staff time to care for patients at the new £300m hospital.

Pharmacists don't care for patients. What they mean is that they have been able to lay these pharmacists off.

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Good questions. Although they mean nothing unless you compare them to the way it previously worked. For example:

Well quite, it's a different way of doing it and it is going to be more or less expensive depending on what it's replaced and how it's implemented.

Clearly there are opportunities for efficiencies in inventory control with automation. Fewer mistakes, less lost/misplaced stock, better ordering procedures. Many places automate stock storage, so it's safe to assume, that this can be cheaper than employing people do to the same job.

The scary bit is that more and more jobs, if they aren't off shored, are automated.

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Could get even more complicated if you then start factoring the social costs of people being made redundant by technology. Although this has always been the case.

Maybe they could re-train in robot maintenance?

Plus what's the cost when the robot picks up the wrong prescription the pharmacist is on auto pilot and doesn't double check? Once people get complacent are more errors likely?

No idea. But surely these are problems that are already inherent in the system?

Plus what's the cost of replacing the system if the supplier decides to up the contract costs of using it? Once it's installed have they got a monopoly?

What's the cost of the workers going on strike if they don't like a change to their pay/pension/overtime arrangements/redundancy?

These are all valid questions but they're just standard issues with running a service or business. Not really anything stopping you from using robots if you want to.

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does this mean we no longer need all those immigrants to keep the NHS going?

Not until we can convince large numbers of 'indigenous' people to get off their ars£s and operate a mop and bucket or negotiate a hospital bed around corridors.

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Not until we can convince large numbers of 'indigenous' people to get off their ars£s and operate a mop and bucket or negotiate a hospital bed around corridors.

Better make these jobs economically viable then!

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Not until we can convince large numbers of 'indigenous' people to get off their ars£s and operate a mop and bucket or negotiate a hospital bed around corridors.

Strange my daughters boyfriend, (early 20's) is doing just that at a local hospital, do you think I should have a word with him and tell him he's letting the side down?

Or maybe we just tell the Daily Mail that they need to invent a new story for why there's mass unemployment, coupled with mass importation of cheap "tax dodge" labour by multinationals, maybe the Home Office can give them a new excuse something along the lines of "British genetically predisposed to being lazy,"

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Better make these jobs economically viable then!

Well, if only the lazy greedy indigenous Brits would learn to live 12 to a room like their eastern European counterparts then they wouldn't need to earn enough to pay a mortgage. ;)

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Pharmacists don't care for patients. What they mean is that they have been able to lay these pharmacists off.

Seems reasonable enough to me.

Why is it necessary to have a degree qualified person on (guess) 35k pa to go to a shelf and select a packet of asprin (replace with any pharma product name) to give to a nurse to give to a patient?

It's completely unnecessary overkill.

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  • 140 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



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