March 22, 2011

Can Pharmacy Mistakes Be Solved By Drug ATM?

News story with video of new drug dispensing machines in Colorado (lone Tree and Boulder)

Can Pharmacy Mistakes Be Solved By Drug ATM? - Denver News Story - KMGH Denver

LONE TREE, Colo. -- After making news when a pharmacist gave a customer the wrong prescription, Safeway is rolling out new automated prescription dispensers in Colorado.

The Script Centers work like automated teller machines. Customers who enroll in the program can pick up their medications at an automated machine at Safeway in Lone Tree and Boulder.

New medications are not dispensed in the machine. The store's pharmacy still requires face-to-face interaction for new medications and controlled medications like OxyContin.

Last month, Mareena Silva picked up medication at a Fort Lupton Safeway, only to learn the medicine was meant for someone else. Silva, who was 6 weeks pregnant, took one of the pills before she realized it wasn't the medicine she expected.

The pill was Methotrexate, and can cause birth defects or act as an abortion pill for pregnant women.

She's still being monitored to see if there are any effects on her pregnancy.

A Safeway spokeswoman told 7NEWS that the Script Center is not a response to that incident.

"We are seeing dozens of customers use this," said Brian Pavur, Safeway's pharmacy division operations manager.

Safeway has used the automated machines on the West Coast for years as a way to let customers pick up medication without having to wait in line.

"It's intended for refillable prescriptions, maintenance medications," said Pavur.

To access the prescription, customers must enroll with their birth date and Safeway prescription number. The kiosk prompts users to input their birth date, a user ID and a personal identification number, a security question and answer and gives the option to enter an e-mail address and phone number.

Instead of using a user ID and PIN, customers can choose to scan their fingerprint for one-touch access.

"Have you ever had an instance where it has made a mistake?" asked 7NEWS reporter Marshall Zelinger.

read rest of story and see videor

Posted by staff at 07:10 AM

July 28, 2010

Sainsbury’s Becomes First UK Retailer to Install Asteres 24/7 Automated Pharmacy Kiosks

SAN DIEGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Asteres Inc. announced today the installation of Express prescription kiosks at UK retailer, Sainsbury’s, for the deposit and collection of patient prescriptions.

source linke

HS prescriptions without waiting in a line and even if the pharmacy is closed.

“We are thrilled to work with Sainsbury’s, as the first UK retailer to bring our Express prescription kiosks to their patients”
Sainsbury’s professional services manager, David Gilder, said: “The vending machines provide a secure and convenient way for customers to obtain prescribed medication at a time that suits them. At the same time we also know that our customers value the option of speaking to a pharmacist so this is an additional service for customers who may prefer it.”

The Express prescription kiosk is quick and secure. Patients who want to use the service register at the machine to create a user ID and password. To deposit, customers sign in, fill out a prescription form, place into the envelope and follow the on screen instructions after which, a receipt is printed with the collection time and other relevant details. To collect, customers sign in and all prescriptions due for collection will appear on screen including payment details if applicable. Customers can also group their whole family's prescriptions together and collect them all at once.

“We are thrilled to work with Sainsbury’s, as the first UK retailer to bring our Express prescription kiosks to their patients,” said Martin Bridges, Vice President, International at Asteres Inc., makers of automated pharmacy and retail kiosks. "The Express prescription kiosk helps pharmacies give their patients fast, convenient, and safe prescription deposit and collection services whilst maintaining a relationship with their trusted pharmacist.”


Asteres Inc. develops secure self-service kiosks for the storage and delivery of prescriptions and consumer products. Asteres’ premier product is ScriptCenter, the first prescription pick-up kiosk for retail, healthcare and military pharmacies that allows patients to pickup and pay for their prescriptions even when the pharmacy is closed. For more information visit

This press release contains forward-looking statements that are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ from those set forth in the forward-looking statements

Posted by staff at 02:33 PM

January 13, 2008

Case Study - Pharmacy Kiosks Still No Go in Illinois

Self-service prescription pharmacy kiosk time savers are still on hold due to legislature still drafting security procedures. and once those are finalized still may not be implemented.

:: - Southern Illinois' Homepage ::

Region not guaranteed to get pharmacy kiosks
By Blackwell Thomas, The Southern
Saturday, January 12, 2008 11:03 PM CST
CARBONDALE - As part of new reforms to state pharmacy laws, Illinois drug stores have the right to install kiosks where customers can pick up prescriptions to avoid waiting in long lines.

But don't expect to see any of these timesavers in Southern Illinois anytime soon.

The specific rules of the law, which will outline security procedures for the dispensers, are still being drafted at the state level, meaning at least another 90-day wait until they can be installed. And once the rules are drafted and security technology crafted, there is no guarantee that Southern Illinois has enough demand to support drug-dispensing machines.

Murphysboro pharmacist Joe Palmer said Thursday that he doesn't see a need for the dispensers.

"I've been in stores before where people have to wait quite a long time but I really don't know whether things are to that degree here in Southern Illinois," he said. "People don't want to stand in line and wait in line very long but we are not there yet."

Echoing Palmer, Michael Polzin, a spokesman for Walgreens, said the company tested an automated kiosk in Southern California last year but the demand was not great enough to justify keeping it. The machine was axed after just a few months.

"There are no plans at this time to do anything like that in Illinois," he said. "I don't know about further down the road. Pharmacies are always changing and evolving; you don't know definitively where it might lead."

But, if a group of local elderly prescription drug users is any indicator, pharmacies won't be driven to use the kiosks in the near future.

Ninety-year old Ruth Parker said she was concerned that seniors might have trouble with the technology.

"How are they going to know how to use a machine?" she said, while sitting with a group of nine fellow residents at Liberty Estates retirement home in Carbondale. "

Collectively, the group questioned the dependability of a machine to avoid getting the prescriptions wrong and who would be held accountable if a mistake is made.

"I take 13 different (prescription pills) a day," said resident Vera Phillips, who gets her medication from a mail-order pharmacy. "I can't afford to get the wrong one (medication)."

That's why the state is taking its time to draft the rules that will outline safety procedures, said Sue Hofer, a spokesperson for the Department of Financial and Professional Regulation.

"This is a public health matter and we want to make sure the right person gets the right prescription," she said. "We want to make sure it's convenient for the customer but also ensure that the customer gets the direct care and service that a pharmacist can provide."

That's all well and good, said Parker, the resident at Liberty Estates, but it doesn't address the issue of the technology.

After someone joked about not being able to use a pop machine, much less an automated drug dispenser requiring different verifications and passwords, Parker said she was having enough trouble with her iPod.

"It's driving me crazy," she laughed.

Posted by staff at 07:59 AM

February 06, 2005

Drug Kiosks in California

A Marin pharmacists group is challenging a push by two major drug and supermarket chains to add ATM-like drug-refill dispensers in their stores.

ATM-style drug kiosks spark debate

By Keri Brenner, IJ reporter

A Marin pharmacists group is challenging a push by two major drug and supermarket chains to add ATM-like drug-refill dispensers in their stores.

However, consumer response so far to one test model in Southern California has been "overwhelming," according to Linda Tinney, founder of Del Mar-based Asteres Inc., which makes the device.

"We had more than 500 people sign up for the service in one month," Tinney said, adding that most customers want to pick up "lifestyle drugs" they take every month, such as Viagra, thyroid pills, allergy medications or hormones. "They don't want to stand in line to get their birth control."

Fred Mayer of San Rafael, president of the nonprofit Pharmacy Defense Fund of San Rafael, said the prescription drug kiosks being tested by Walnut Creek-based Longs Drug Stores could be a problem if people use them after the pharmacy closes.

"It's a safety hazard," said Mayer, a past president of the Marin County Pharmacists Association, explaining that no one would be available to check for potential labeling errors, symptoms, side effects, drug interactions or other problems. "Pharmacists shouldn't be trained for eight years to stick something in a kiosk."

Both Longs and Pleasanton-based Safeway Inc. have waivers from the California State Board of Pharmacy to test and install the devices at their drug and grocery stores, said Patricia Harris, the state board's executive officer.

The machines, made by Del Mar-based Asteres, Inc., would work by holding prescriptions that already have been filled by store pharmacists until a customer is ready to pick them up. The customer would need a personal identification number (PIN) or card to access the machine, which could be available around the clock for stores that are open 24 hours.

"We see it as an added convenience for our customers, who will be able to pick up a prescription when the pharmacy is closed," Safeway spokeswoman Jennifer Webber said. "It's not a dispenser, it's a delivery machine - it delivers prescriptions that have been filled by our pharmacists."

Longs officials say the kiosk is one of many improvements the company is looking at to allow pharmacists more time with customers, not less. By automating the most routine functions, pharmacists would be better able to spend time with customers who have questions, Longs spokeswoman Phyllis Proffer said.

"Obviously, the heart of our business is our pharmacy," she said. "We would consider the pharmacists to have a major role in drug therapy, and we would do everything we can to promote interaction between the pharmacist and the customer/patient."

Proffer said she did not know if the devices would be installed at stores other than the one in Southern California. Harris said the one Longs test site is at a store in Del Mar; Safeway has not yet set up any test stores, she said.

The Pharmacy Defense Fund, a group Mayer formed to fight legal issues of concern to pharmacists, last week sent a letter to Harris criticizing the waivers' alleged lack of specific details on issues such as security of the machines, proximity to pharmacists, notification to customers about counseling and the potential for consumers to violate the refills-only policy.

Jeff Moss of San Rafael, attorney for the Pharmacy Defense Fund, contends in his letter to the state board that the Longs waiver, issued Dec. 6, is "hardly a pilot program" and "appears to be a blanket waiver to allow Longs to install devices in all of its California stores."

Longs has 472 stores, 393 of which are in California, according to Proffer. Safeway has 1,815 stores in the United States and Canada.

But Tinney said the machine's design and operation addresses all of Moss's concerns - even if the language in the state board waiver might not spell it out.

"It's clear that they haven't talked to our vice president of pharmacy," Tinney said. "All their requirements are addressed in the technology."

Harris said she will forward Moss' letter to the pharmacy board when it meets in April. The board is considering approval of a new regulation to allow the devices without a waiver, she said.

"These are for refill prescriptions only," Harris said. "I'm sure if there are any problems, we'll hear from consumers - so far we haven't heard of any."

She said she "doesn't know who said it's a pilot program," because the Longs and Safeway waivers allow for installing the dispensers at any or all of the companies' stores. However, Harris added, the state board can rescind the waivers at any time.

"This is just an option consumers can use," she said.

Retired Kaiser Permanente pharmacist Phil Grauss of Novato said the waiver was "very ambiguous" because it doesn't have enough safeguards to guarantee that the right person is getting the right prescription.

Grauss, president of the Marin County Pharmacists Association, said during his 33-year career with Kaiser, clerks were required - at the minimum - to check the labels and identifications for even routine drug refills before handing the bag of drugs to the patients.

"What if there's a problem, what if there's an error - someone's getting dizzy and has some questions?" Grauss said. "The one-on-one, face-to-face with a pharmacist isn't going to happen."

Grauss added that he saw the issue as a financial one rather than something that improves customer service. If a machine can deliver the prescriptions, he said, there is less need for clerks or pharmacists to staff the operation.

"Ultimately, it's about money," he said. "It's always got an economic attachment or they wouldn't bother doing it."

Posted by Craig at 11:37 PM

January 20, 2004

Drive Up Pharmacy

Hypercom to Bring Prescription for Fast, Easy-Use Payment Technology to Drive-Up Pharmacies

January 20, 2004 09:02

Diebold and Hypercom to Bring Prescription for Fast, Easy-Use Payment Technology to Drive-Up Pharmacies

PHOENIX, Jan 20, 2004 /PRNewswire-FirstCall via COMTEX/ -- Diebold, Incorporated (NYSE: DBD), a global leader in providing integrated self-service solutions, security systems and service, and global electronic payment technology leader Hypercom Corporation (NYSE: HYC) today announced that they have joined together in a strategic partnership wherein Diebold will distribute Hypercom's smart, fast and easy-use outdoor card payment technology to drive-up pharmacies in the US and Canada.

(Photo: )

"Diebold is one of the most respected drive-up pharmacy solutions providers in the country, and the integrated solution that we can now deliver will bring new levels of speed, security and superior service to the payment process for the ever-growing number of consumers who opt for drive-up service at pharmacies nationwide," said O.B. Rawls, IV, president, Hypercom North America. "This integrated solution provides a unique value proposition that delivers very distinct competitive advantages."

Payment Technology Designed For Speed, Durability

The rugged, high security HFT 505 outdoor card payment terminal, conveniently mounts near the retail transaction drawer, or the pneumatic prescription delivery terminal at pharmacy drive-up locations.

"Hypercom's card payment terminal is a custom application that will add convenience for pharmacy drive-up patient/customers paying with credit and/or debit cards," said Jack Finefrock, vice president of Diebold's Retail Solutions Group. "It also increases revenues, productivity and profits for pharmacies, and provides faster through-put at the point-of-sale."

About Hypercom ( )

Celebrating 26 years of technology excellence, innovation and industry leadership, Hypercom Corporation is a leading global provider of electronic payment solutions that add value at the point-of-sale for consumers, merchants and acquirers. Headquartered in Phoenix, Arizona, Hypercom's products include secure card payment terminals and web appliances, networking equipment and software applications for e-commerce, m-commerce, smart card and traditional payment applications.

About Diebold

Diebold, Incorporated is a global leader in providing integrated self-service delivery systems, security and services. Diebold employs more than 13,000 associates with representation in more than 88 countries worldwide and is headquartered in North Canton, Ohio, USA. Diebold reported revenue of $1.9 billion in 2002 and is publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol "DBD." For more information, visit the company's Web site at , or .

Hypercom is a registered trademark of Hypercom Corporation. All other products or services mentioned in this document are trademarks, service marks, registered trademarks or registered service marks of their respective owners. Certain matters discussed within this press release are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Although Hypercom management believes the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements are based on reasonable assumptions, it can give no assurance that its expectations will be attained. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from expectations include industry, competitive and technological changes; risks associated with international operations and foreign currency fluctuations; the composition, timing and size of orders from and shipments to major customers; inventory obsolescence; market acceptance of new products and other risks detailed from time to time in Hypercom's SEC reports, including the company's most recent 10-K and subsequent 10-Qs.

For further information, please contact: Media, Pete Schuddekopf of Hypercom Corporation, +1-602-504-5383, [email protected]; or Joseph Richardson, +1-330-490-5562, [email protected], or Investors, John Kristoff, +1-330-490-5900, [email protected], both of Diebold, Incorporated.

SOURCE Hypercom Corporation; Diebold, Incorporated

Media, Pete Schuddekopf of Hypercom Corporation,
+1-602-504-5383, [email protected]; or Joseph Richardson,
+1-330-490-5562, [email protected], or Investors, John Kristoff,
+1-330-490-5900, [email protected], both of Diebold, Incorporated

Posted by Craig at 03:43 PM

November 21, 2003 forms Retail Advisory Board forms Retail Advisory Board

ALEXANDRIA, Va. - November 20, 2003 -, a wholly owned subsidiary of the National Association of Chain Drug Stores, has formed a Retailer Advisory Board.

The 15 board members will meet regularly with to help the company improve execution between suppliers, wholesalers and retailers in the industry.

Executives from the following companies will be represented on the board: Ahold USA, Albertsons, Cardinal Health, Care Pharmacies, Costco Wholesale,, Duane Reade, Familymeds, Happy Harrys, Kerr Drug, Kinney Drugs, Kmart, Medicap Pharmacies, Medicine Shoppe International and Rite Aid.

"We are privileged to have the participation of these distinguished retail pharmacy industry leaders. This group of executives will provide with valuable perspectives and insights," stated Brad Mitchell, president and chief executive officer of, a Web-based communications network for the retail pharmacy industry.

Posted by Craig at 02:36 PM