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March 10, 2022

Transforming Drug Diversion Through Technology and Data

JoAnne Myhre, CPht, FMSHP, BA, Drug Diversion Program Manager, Allina Health

John Jordan, PharmD, BCPS, Senior Director of Pharmacy Services, TidalHealth

Drug diversion costs the healthcare industry more than $70 billion per year, and is one of the leading challenges in medication management today. As pharmacy leaders at Allina Health and TidalHealth who understand the patient safety and cost implications, we are leveraging data and technology to attack drug diversion head-on.

At Allina Health, our drug diversion initiative is focused on preventive mitigation, reactive mitigation, and education. A multidisciplinary team of pharmacy leadership and audit services worked together to implement best-practice standards, monthly monitoring, and education initiatives to drive compliance and safety. All of this is powered through Omnicell's Intelligence Solutions, which have helped us to: 

  • Reduce discrepancy audit time from two months to just over two days
  • Achieve documentation accuracy greater than 98 percent
  • Conduct more real-time investigation into potential diversion
  • Shorten medication dispense to administration time to 12 minutes
  • Reduce medication administration to waste time to 45 minutes

We minimize corporate risk and improve efficiency across our medication management strategy through this focused approach.

At TidalHealth, we're partnering with our nursing and anesthesia colleagues to drive diversion awareness and controlled substance monitoring. Our anesthesia department recently formed a new diversion-prevention team within the hospital. Leveraging data analytics pulled through our Anesthesia Workstation Cabinets, the anesthesia department can now effectively track diversion compliance in operating and procedure rooms, allowing us to: 

  • Accomplish documentation accuracy of nearly 98 percent
  • Achieve about 92 percent automatic closure of matching cabinet dispenses to administrations
  • Reduce medication administration to waste time to 46 minutes
  • Shorten medication dispense to administration time to 10 minutes

This change was made possible thanks to the involvement of the anesthesia team in the diversion monitoring process. The Chief of Anesthesia is now aware of flaws in documentation and has an awareness of open transactions through enhanced data visibility. Team members on the diversion team regularly communicate with the pharmacy to further increase responsibility.

Interested in learning more about how technology and data enhance diversion management initiatives? Visit Omnicell at booth #5767 during HIMSS22, March 14-18 in Orlando. Meet with intelligence experts to see how cloud-based solutions, including advanced cloud automation, software, and technology-enabled services, are helping leading health systems to improve patient safety and reduce costs.

See more about how Allina Health and TidalHealth transformed drug diversion through tech and data from this replay at Omnicell Illuminate.

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      The views and opinions expressed in this blog are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of any other agency, organization, employer, or company. Assumptions made in the analysis are not reflective of the position of any entity other than the author(s). These views are always subject to change, revision, and rethinking at any time and may not be held in perpetuity.