St. Mary’s Medical Center Pharmacy

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St. Mary’s Medical Center Pharmacy

Project Type: Pharmacy Duluth, MN

Client: Essentia Health

Plans to replace the existing in-patient Pharmacy at St. Mary’s Medical Center began in 2008. Several options for modernization were considered, including relocation within the existing hospital as well as renovation and expansion in the Pharmacy’s existing location. Key elements considered during the initial planning stages included adequate space to accommodate new technologies, phasing and infection control measures required if the existing location was to be maintained, location of pharmacy in relation to nursing unit access, delivery access, budget, and schedule. It became obvious that keeping the Pharmacy in its existing location posed significant budget and phasing issues, and severely limited expansion capabilities. The decision was made to re-locate the pharmacy to a new location on the same floor within the St. Mary’s Medical Center facility.

Once a new location was approved, LHB participated in a LEAN Design process lead by the Owner’s in-house Process Excellence team. Through a series of meetings and in-depth analysis, the processes and work-flows of the pharmacy were thoroughly documented through detailed process mapping. These documents and analysis were then used by the design team to develop a schematic plan focused on minimizing waste and maximizing efficiency.

Completed in the Summer of 2010, the relocation of St. Mary’s Medical Center In- patient Pharmacy provides a state-of-the-art facility for the in-patient pharmaceutical needs of SMMC as well as the primary distribution center for secondary pharmacy sites throughout the main campus in Duluth, Minnesota. The final design incorporated robotic picking stations and computerized inventory systems that stream-line pharmacy processes and minimize product waste.


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