The success of your pharmacy will depend on the care that you give to your patients. However, you cannot deliver high-quality care if you’re slammed with routine, monotonous, and time-intensive tasks. The solution for this lies in streamlining workflow. Here are some strategies that you can adopt to streamline your pharmacy’s processes.
Designation of responsibilities even in smaller pharmacies is crucial. Every pharmacy should identify key tasks and assign them to different employees to enhance accountability. For example, you will need to clarify who will answer the phone, handle refills, return unclaimed prescriptions, and follow up with physicians or insurers.
Note that the fewer the responsibilities each staff member has, the less time they will take transitioning from one task to the other. Therefore, this will ultimately increase the efficiency of processes and enhance customer satisfaction. However, you will need to keep in mind your employees’ skills, experience, knowledge, and personality traits to ensure that they are perfect for the responsibilities assigned.
Reinvent your Medication Purchasing Process
You can save a lot of money by increasing your buying efficiency. One way to optimize your purchasing habits is by using long-term buying contracts to take advantage of the lower costs.
Also, you can opt to join organizations that help you secure immediate access to generic medications immediately after they are released. Alternatively, you can use tiered discount programs to reduce your overall purchasing costs.
Analyze Your Data
Analyzing data is another thing you can do to smoothen operations in your pharmacy. It helps determine where you’re failing so that you can make the necessary changes. Your data may show where delays are emerging, for instance, in the case where your employees have to contact the physician’s office to clarify the issue. Also, your data may help show you employees who are more productive than others. This creates an opportunity to interview them and understand why the less performing employees struggle. You will notice that sometimes it is because they are more engaged with the patients, either cross-selling products or advising them. This step will therefore be helpful when you are allocating responsibilities.
Establishing Goals and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)
Before you can even think of strategies to improve your pharmacy’s workflow, you must identify exactly how productive you want to be. What do you want to achieve? Do you want prescriptions to be filled within 5 minutes of drop-off? How many prescriptions do you want your employees to dispense per hour? It is essential that you benchmark your goals against other pharmacies and then get software that can help you track and improve performance.
Automation can help reduce the time taken in different operations. For example, software such as datascan pharmacy management automates many tasks, reducing the need for redundant employees and saving time. This software is designed to enhance pharmacies’ efficiency and safety as it handles prescriptions accurately. These systems also help improve patient outcomes since they allow patients to conveniently communicate with their pharmacists online through patient portals.
These management systems can also help prevent medical fraud since they require that you enter all prescription information in the database and check it against the patient’s history when dispensing drugs. Other automated processes carried out by this software include stock organization and counting, medication ordering, E-prescribing, collecting patient information, etc.
Being successful in today’s competitive environment requires you to streamline all processes in your pharmacy. Automation, responsibility assignment, purchasing process, setting goals and KPIs, and unleashing data are some of the key areas where you can find an opportunity to improve and streamline workflow. And by streamlining your workflow, you can be more productive and even save money.