• Renown Health
  • Pharmacy

New Automated Robot System in Renown Health

May 07, 2020

Renown Health logo

Renown Health announced today that it is now using ARxIUM’s Robotic IV Automation (RIVA) system in its pharmacy to streamline the production process of IV admixtures. RIVA is a fully automated compounding system designed to precisely and accurately prepare IV syringes and bags in hospital pharmacies. This state-of-the-art system is considered the gold standard when it comes to safety, effectiveness and precision in pharmacy technology.

To operate the robot, pharmacists and pharmacy technicians load drugs into the machine, in addition to drug vials, syringes and IV bags. Everything that goes into RIVA receives a barcode as it’s loaded to help the robot identify each item. The operator then instructs the robot to create the drug and RIVA goes to work, allowing employees to go about other duties as the robot maximizes efficiency. RIVA validates each component during the admixture process including size, barcode and weight of each ingredient to ensure accuracy. For an added level of safety, RIVA uses high-intensity pulsed ultraviolet light for disinfection of all vial and bag parts prior to compounding the drugs.

“The contamination of IV products usually comes from humans – from our skin, breath, hair or other particles in the air,” said Renown Regional Medical Center’s pharmacy manager, Derek Gillespie. “Plus, the repetitive process of a human mixing 100 items of the same thing and the possibility for distraction can lead to errors. By automating the complex admixture process using the RIVA system, we’re able to significantly reduce the risk of contamination and human error.” 

RIVA has the continuous capability to learn how to produce new admixtures through detailed programming done by pharmacists and pharmacy technicians. The system stores the information so it can recreate the drug whenever it’s instructed to do so. 

With the help of pharmacy staff, RIVA produces a batch of approximately 50 items at a time, and can make up to 500 admixtures a day. By using RIVA, the pharmacy’s goal is to have items available on hand to help meet patients’ needs quickly. Additionally, in the case of a drug shortage, RIVA would enable the pharmacy to make its own IV solutions or admix items unavailable for purchase. 

Only 27 pharmacies in the country currently use the RIVA system. Up until recently, Renown’s pharmacy team did all of its admixtures manually.

“It’s exciting to have this new technology in our pharmacy and to know that at Renown Health, we are leveraging the latest technology out there to make our patients as safe as possible,” said Tony Slonim, MD, DrPH, president and CEO of Renown. “Our staff takes pride in using technology like the RIVA system as it allows them to hone their craft on the best technology in the field. We look forward to maximizing our IV production capabilities and fulfilling our patient’s needs more efficiently than ever thanks to RIVA and the incredible team that operates the robot.”

For b-roll of RIVA in action and an interview from Derek Gillespie, click here.



About Renown Health

Renown Health is a locally governed and locally owned, not-for-profit integrated healthcare network serving northern Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. Renown is one of the region’s largest private employers with a workforce of more than 7,000. It comprises three acute care hospitals, a rehabilitation hospital, the area’s most comprehensive medical group and urgent care network, and the region’s largest and only locally owned not-for-profit insurance company, Hometown Health. Renown has a long tradition and commitment to continually improve the care and the health of our community. For more information, visit renown.org

About ARxIUM

Based in Winnipeg, Manitoba and Buffalo Grove, Illinois, ARxIUM is an industry-leading developer of pharmacy automation, workflow and consulting solutions that improve safety, productivity and workflow. The company provides solutions to shared service centers and health system, hospital, long-term care, retail and government pharmacies. ARxIUM is the developer of the only fully automated IV compounding system in the market today, and offers automated packaging, dispensing, vial filling and high volume systems. In addition, the company provides inventory management, scheduling and workflow software, technical consulting, and system implementation assistance, among other services. ARxIUM is also the creator of the Pharmacy 4.0 approach, which seamlessly converges clinical pharmacy, central production and automation advancements into fully automated, interactive data processes. The approach allows pharmacies to better monitor and react in real-time to address patient care and medication delivery demands. For more information, visit www.arxium.com


Media Contact

Renown Public Relations

Email Us! news@renown.org

New Automated Robot System in Renown Health