Robots dispense medications at UCSF med center, improving efficiency  Robots dispensing medicines may seem like something out of the movie "Wall-E," but it's actually happening in San Francisco right now. Patients at the UCSF Medical Center will never come in contact with them, but robots are processing and dispensing their medications, improving the hospital's efficiency. 

The UCSF Medical Center recently opened its new automated hospital pharmacy, which some analysts say is the most technologically advanced facility of its kind in the U.S., if not the world. The goal of the robotic dispensary system is to cut down on mistakes in medication allotment, which sometimes results when humans are the ones doling out the medication.

So far, the robots are working better than expected: Of the 350,000 doses of medication prepared during the system's recent phase in, there has not been a single error recorded, according to the medical center. Aside from its proficiency, the robots also allow pharmacists and nurses to focus more on direct patient care, answering questions about medications that patients often have.

"The automated pharmacy streamlines medication delivery from prescription to patient," said Lynn Paulsen, PharmD, director of pharmaceutical services at UCSF Medical Center.
"Each step in safe, effective medication therapy is contingent on the other." The system has already helped cut business costs and is being introduced to UCSF's other medical centers throughout the Bay Area. 
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