Hospital Mission Partners and community members gathered on Friday afternoon for the blessing and dedication of the new inpatient pharmacy at OSF HealthCare St. Francis Hospital & Medical Group. Attendees were able to get a first look and tour the new 2004 square foot space.
Dave Lord, president of OSF St. Francis Hospital & Medical Group welcomed attendees and noted the important role the pharmacy staff plays in the lives of OSF’s patients. “Although patients may not enter these walls, the work that happens in here truly impacts the care they receive and will provide an abundant amount of healing and comfort to all those who we serve.”
Father Robb Jurkovich, hospital chaplain presided over the blessing and dedication ceremony, and Kelly Jefferson, vice president of operations gave the opening remarks. “The opening of this new pharmacy will provide the additional space needed to allow work to flow more smoothly and will bring us into compliance with new standards for sterile compounding,” said Jefferson.
The new pharmacy, budgeted at approximately $1.1 million, offers an additional 700 square feet compared to the existing space. Jefferson says pharmacy Mission Partners were crucial in the design of the new space, to allow for improved workflow and to accommodate the growth in pharmacy services. The new workflow will increase efficiencies and the additional space was also necessary to add two clean rooms that include new hoods, ventilation system, and a camera system. The features of the clean rooms are essential in ensuring that medications are mixed to the appropriate potency and without contamination, while also ensuring the safety of the Mission Partner preparing the medication.
Pharmacy Mission Partners have been working in a confined space that was built in 1985, when the number of medications prepared and dispensed was limited, and prior to pharmacy personnel providing chemotherapy to oncology patients. Today, the OSF St. Francis pharmacy staff prepares and dispenses the medications needed to treat thousands of patients each year.
“We may be a critical access hospital in a rural community, but we have the third busiest oncology service in the OSF HealthCare system,” said Jefferson. The existing pharmacy space is no longer adequate for the increasing demand for chemotherapy, and the new associated regulations for safely mixing the medication.
A detailed relocation plan will be implemented next month and will not cause any disruption in patient care.