The ONU Healthwise Compliance Packaging System

Katie Westgerdes, PharmD, pharmacist at the ONU Healthwise Pharmacy, explains the medication synchronization program at the ONU Healthwise Pharmacy during the Cardinal Health Retail Business Conference on July 19, 2019. 

Katie Westgerdes, PharmD: 

In order to be in compliance packaging they have to be in our med sync program and for our med sync program, we call our patients 5 days ahead from their pickup date and we fill their prescriptions 3 days ahead of time. That gives us time to do a refill requests, prior authorizations, and then when the fill date comes, if we need anything to be ordered or changed, NDC-wise, we can handle that 3 days to make sure it’s ready to be picked up.

The patient’s pick up dates stays relatively the same depending on the month, obviously, if it’s a 31-day month it’s different than if it’s a 28 day month, but we call the patient 5 days ahead of time to review everything, make sure nothings changed, that they don’t’ have any questions, and then we process everything in our pharmacy software systems. It communicates with the Dispill software, and then we’re able to print the labels that are customized for the patient, which is one of the best features. In each bubble it tells you exactly what’s in there so a patient’s able to know what they’re taking and at the top it gives everything that would be on a prescription label so they’re even able to pick it out if for whatever reason something changes, and we need to go pick out the pink round one with an R on it I can do that.

So, then once that’s processed the pharmacists will check will call the prescriptions and then the technician will manually fill each card. Each card can hold up to depending on which cell you buy, you can buy a 28-day cell or 32 depending on the patient population you’re serving. It can fill up to a week if they’re taking it 4 times a day or hold more if they’re taking it less frequently. So, it’s really customizable to each patient which is great. So the technician will fill the card and then the pharmacist will check and then it’s a simple peel-off sticker that you press down and it’s good to go.

The patient’s really like it, because it’s color-coordinated and they can rip off one dose, they can rip off one day and put it in their pocket. That’s actually why some of our patients love it. We have some fire-fighters, some EMTs, some police officers that love it simply because they can tear off their medicine and put it in their pocket. It doesn’t matter how long they’re at work that day, they have their medicine.