Local

March 29, 2013

Airmen, robot work side by side to fill prescriptions at Luke

Senior Airman Boniface Kinuthia, 56th Medical Support Squadron pharmacy technician, places an empty tray back on the automated conveyor belt March 20 after removing the prescriptions at the Arizona Refill Center on Luke Air Force Base. The ARC uses a robotic delivery system which is unique to Luke. The automated system fills prescriptions, labels bottles and places tape over the top. Over the past year, the ARC has refilled more than 172,000 prescriptions.

Over the past year, the three 56th Medical Support Squadron pharmacies have filled more than 396,000 prescriptions, relying heavily on the Arizona Refill Center, which uses a robotic delivery system to handle 35 percent of the overall daily workload.

Using the robotic delivery system, the ARC is both quick, safe and cost efficient. The system is completely automated, using a robotic arm that fills the prescriptions, labels the bottles and places tape over the top. All prescriptions for an individual patient are grouped together and then a staff member double checks the accuracy.

The ARC is unique to Luke Air Force Base. It was originally designed to be a regional refill facility supporting all MTFs in Arizona in the early 2000s.

“Our distance from Davis-Monthan AFB and the Army’s Fort Huachuca did not make this a reality but the capability was left at Luke AFB due to the beneficiary population in the Valley of 96,000 and the volume of prescriptions filled annually,” said Maj. Kevin McCaughin, 56th MDSS pharmacy flight commander.

Over the past year, the ARC has refilled more than 172,000 prescriptions and every prescription filled on base is a savings of 40 to 60 percent over using downtown network pharmacies.

“The ARC fills 100 percent of the medication refills for medications filled at the 56th Medical Group pharmacies,” said Staff Sgt. Johnny Amaya, 56th MDSS ARC NCO-in-charge. “The robotic delivery system fills 60 percent of our workload and the staff handles the other 40 percent, with a 99.9998-percent accuracy rate, which is five times greater than comparable civilian sector rates.”

The ARC further supports the mobility mission of pharmacy technicians assigned to the 56th Fighter Wing, as any pharmacy technician must be prepared to work in a stand-alone capacity downrange.

“Having a refill facility where technicians and pharmacists can work side by side in an uninterrupted fashion to complete this vital training is something that sets Luke apart from other bases,” McCaughin said.

While Amaya feels rewarded by the knowledge that he has a direct role in maintaining the health and wellness of the customers, McCaughin highlights the increase in customers over the past three years.

“The Luke pharmacy team is proud that over the past three years we have seen a growth in prescription service of ten percent recapture from patients enrolled to the 56th MDG and 27 percent from TRICARE beneficiaries living within the Phoenix area,” McCaughin said. “It is our goal to be the pharmacy of choice for the Luke community, and we welcome any suggestions to help better our service.”




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Decking the halls …

Staff Sgt. Timothy Boyer Andrea Mathis, 56th Force Support Squadron Fighter Country Inn accounting clerk, decorates a Christmas tree Dec. 4 in the lobby at the Fighter Country Inn at Luke Air Force Base. Base lodging is available to active-duty service members, retirees and dependents on a space-available basis. For more information, call 623-856-3941.
 
 

News Briefs December 12, 2014

Kachina Gate closure The Kachina Gate will be closed to inbound traffic through Dec. 19 for gas valve repair. Outbound traffic will not be affected. For more information, call 623-856-7051. Tax season volunteers The 2015 tax center is looking for one volunteer to serve as site coordinator and volunteers to serve during the 2015 tax...
 
 
Airman 
PEDRO MOTA

Thunderbolts lend helping hand to veterans in need

AirmanPEDRO MOTA Airmen from the 56th Comptroller Squadron help serve a holiday meal to the homeless Dec. 5 at the Central Arizona Shelter Services. The money was donated by the Veterans Administration in an effort to feed home...
 

 
tax-return-image

Become a VITA Volunteer

Courtesy photo Volunteers Are Needed for the Upcoming Tax Season. No prior tax experience required and FREE training is provided. Luke Air Force Base is looking for volunteers to support the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance prog...
 
 
141204-F-HT977-018

Cookies on the move

Lisa Sloane, left, wife of Col. Jeremy Sloane, 56th Fighter Wing vice commander, instructs volunteers on how to package cookies during the cookie drive Dec. 4. The cookie drive is held in early December to bring a little homine...
 
 

Justice Report

The following is a list of Article 15s issued at Luke Air Force Base for October and November. 56th Maintenance Group • A staff sergeant received an Article 15 for wrongful use of a controlled substance. The member received a reduction to the rank of senior airman, forfeiture of $1,213 pay per month for two...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin