North York General Hospital has both an inpatient pharmacy department and an outpatient pharmacy at the General site.
We are technologically advanced, being one of three hospitals in Canada to have a Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) Stage 6 designation with an electronic medical record (encompassing computerized clinician order entry, electronic MAR, scanned paper records and electronic prescribing), barcoding to enhance a closed loop medication management system, and evidence-based clinical decision support systems.
Pharmacy Services provides medication dispensing according to safe medication practice guidelines for all oral, intravenous, and total parenteral nutrition therapy. As well, it manufactures medications that are not readily available in required dosages for paediatric and neonatal intensive care patients. Pharmacy technicians are responsible for the preparation, manufacturing, and dispensing of the majority of oral, IV, TPN, and chemotherapy medications. They are also certified for our tech-check-tech procedures.
In addition to verifying all medications prepared and dispensed through Pharmacy Services, pharmacists provide care to patients in a variety of ways (see below). The inpatient pharmacy staff consists of a director, two managers, one clinical coordinator/practitioner, five clinical practitioners, 36 staff pharmacists and 30 technicians.
Role of Inpatient Pharmacy with inpatient care areas
In collaboration with the interdisciplinary team, pharmacists are actively involved with each of the inpatient care areas, with services that include:
- Performing patient assessments to obtain a thorough medication history and to verify allergy upon admission
- Assessing all new medication orders to ensure appropriateness and completeness
- Monitoring a patient's response to therapy, and potential medication related problems or side effects of treatment to provide a resolution plan
- Attending patient care rounds
- Providing drug information
- Providing medication education for health providers; and
- Providing medication counselling and education while a patient is in the hospital or upon discharge
- There is also a hospital-wide Pharmacist Warfarin Management Program.
North York General's outpatient pharmacy services are provided at the General site and rotations are offered there. The General site staff consists of one manager, two staff pharmacists, four pharmacy technicians and one volunteer. The outpatient drug store provides prescription and over-the-counter drug services, using state-of-the-art technology such as the Beacon® dispensing system. Other services include: consultations on medication use, individualized one-on-one pharmacist to patient medication assessment and education sessions (including MedsChecks), and preparation of patient compliance packaging.
We currently offer the following placements:
- University of Toronto Pharmacy Students
°Early Practice Experience (EPE) —Year 1 and 2
°PharmD Advanced Pharmacy Practice Experience (APPE)
- University of Waterloo Pharmacy Students
°Co-op Students (outpatient drug store)
Ontario College of Pharmacists — Internships
°Structured Practical Training (SPT) Internships for Pharmacist Licensure
Pharmacy Technician Students
°We currently work with a number of community colleges and institutions for their student placements throughout the year.