Nellis Pharmacy: New technology, services assisting patients
By Staff Sgt. Angelica Punla, Courtesy Story
/ Published October 03, 2019
NELLIS AIR FORCE BESE, Nev. -- Patients receiving care from Mike O’Calllaghan Military Medical Center (MOMMC) Main Pharmacy and Satellite Pharmacy at Nellis Air Force Base (AFB), Nevada, can now be assisted by new equipment and and services provided.
The pharmacies are adding new tools and services to support 238,000 Department of Defense beneficiaries and process about 2,500 outpatient prescriptions per day.
“The Satellite Pharmacy recently installed new advanced technology and software that improves dispensing safety, efficiency and patient communications,” said Staff Sgt. Angelica Punla, 99th Medical Support Squadron MOMMC Main Pharmacy frontline supervisor.
The new equipment is called the GSL IntelliVault and was installed Aug. 6, 2019. The system can use barcoding technology to file prescriptions into cabinets that can only be opened when patients present their Common Access Card at the window.
Furthermore, the new GSL IntelliVault sends patients a text message or e-mail notification as soon as the prescription is loaded into the secure cabinet and ready for pick up.
“The Satellite Pharmacy accepts electronic prescription (e-Prescription) orders from off-base providers,” said Punla. “Patients can improve the safety and speed of civilian prescription processing by asking their off-base providers to e-Prescribe. The great benefit of e-Prescription is that the patients do not have to wait while their prescriptions are processed.”
When e-Prescriptions are sent to the Satellite Pharmacy, patients can call 702-653-2273 and activate their e-Prescription(s) by phone. In conjunction with electronic notification capabilities of the GSL IntelliVault, patients will know the moment their medications are ready to be picked up.
Patients can ask to be registered for GSL IntelliVault electronic notifications at the Satellite Pharmacy. Please note that the pharmacy can no longer fill non-formulary civilian prescriptions for patients who do not receive primary care at a military treatment facility.
One of the additional pharmacy services is the pharmacist-run Cough, Cold and Allergy clinic, which does not require an appointment. Patients between ages 12 to 55 can pull a ticket at the MOMMC Main Pharmacy and request a form for cough, cold and allergy symptoms. The patient will have a consultation with the pharmacist and will be prescribed the appropriate medications as needed.
“This pharmacy service is not only convenient to patients, as it does not require a doctor visit, but it has also reduced the Emergency Room wait time in half,” said Punla. “It has freed up clinic appointments for other patient medical needs.”
The pharmacy continues to add additional services to support service members, civilians and retirees.
“The pharmacy also provides a safe, easy and environmentally friendly way to dispose of expired and unused medications into MedSafe bins,” said Punla. “This disposal service has significantly reduced the potential for prescription drug abuse and has increased the safety of patients and their family members as well as the environment.”
MedSafe bins are available at both MOMMC main pharmacy and Satellite Pharmacy. Approximately, more than 10,000 pounds of medications have been collected for safe disposal.
Lastly, the 99th Medical Group has upgraded the Script Center servicing beneficiaries who work at Creech AFB. Storage capacity for Creech Script Center was doubled, adding larger vending bins, and replacing old parts that were causing downtime for repairs. The upgraded Script Center will hold medications for up to two weeks.
Though patient wait times are long at the pharmacy, there are continuous efforts to improve customer experience and service. New policies, procedures and technology are being developed every day to provide a better and more efficient experience for everyone.