Prescriptions Filled Onsite without Traveling to Retail Pharmacy

Knoxville Hospital & Clinics is offering a new feature in the Emergency Department –an InstyMeds prescription dispensing unit. This service will allow Emergency Department patients to fill non-maintenance medications from the patient waiting area, without waiting for a retail pharmacy to open or traveling to a retail pharmacy while the patient is in pain or sick.

The InstyMeds dispenser is a fully automated, ATM-style dispensing system. It is a complete outpatient prescription medication system that includes multiple safety checks to provide fast, convenient, accurate dispensing every time. The dispenser has space to accommodate up to 102 prescriptions and over the counter medications in different size and shape containers. Tablets, capsules, creams, ointments, liquids, inhalers, and drops can be dispensed. The InstyMeds dispenser is not intended to supply maintenance medications, but short-term medications – antibiotics, topicals, pain medications, cough medications, etc.

So how does this dispenser work? After the patient has been seen by a doctor in the emergency department, the doctor enters the patient’s prescription electronically. The patient then has the option of choosing to fill their medication on site at the InstyMeds dispenser or receiving a printed prescription to take to a pharmacy of their choice. With the medication order, the system verifies coverage and adjudicates insurance claims. The system also accommodates self-paying customers. So now the patient is ready to fill their prescription at the InstyMeds dispenser.

At the InstyMeds dispenser, the patient enters the prescription order number and their date of birth for validation. The patient also enters their method of payment – credit card, debit card, or cash – to cover the cost of the prescription or co-pay. It’s important to note that the InstyMeds dispenser will bill the patient’s insurance and the patient will pay the same co-pay that they’d pay at a pharmacy. The machine then processes the order and medication is automatically labeled. A three bar code check system ensures that the right patient receives the right medication within two to five minutes. There is a phone available on the machine for immediate assistance with InstyMeds staff should the patient need it.
In October 2008 the Iowa Board of Pharmacy agreed to allow InstyMeds into hospital emergency departments if a 24 hour retail pharmacy is not located within a 15 mile radius. In April 2008 KHC installed an InstyMeds dispenser in the Pleasantville Clinic for the same convenience.

Knoxville Hospital & Clinics, a Critical Access Hospital serving Marion County and the surrounding area, is dedicated to providing personal, progressive quality health care with compassion. For more information regarding this release and other happenings at Knoxville Hospital & Clinics, call the Public Relations office at (641) 842-1418.