Robotics & Automation News

Market trends and business perspectives


Swisslog Healthcare displays robot for medication delivery in the US

Swisslog Healthcare, a leading supplier of medication supply chain management solutions, is demonstrating Relay robot at the American Society of Health System Pharmacy (ASHP) Midyear Clinical Meeting, this week in Anaheim, California.

Designed and developed by Savioke, Relay is healthcare’s first front-of-house autonomous service robot (ASR).

With more than 2,300 pneumatic tube systems across the United States, Swisslog Healthcare is no stranger to automated transport of medications, blood, laboratory samples and other patient-critical items.

“An ideal solution for supplementing pharmacy couriers during busy and off hours, Relay is the perfect bridge between our portfolios of transport and pharmacy automation,” explained Anthony Pugliese, Senior Vice President of Sales at Swisslog Healthcare.

“While laboratory departments have been some of the earliest adopters of mobile robotics, we’re seeing a surge of interest from hospital pharmacies – both inpatient and outpatient services.”

In addition to productivity gains from higher staff utilisation, the company’s hospital pharmacy clients also utilise Relay for transporting hazardous medications, such as chemotherapy, which can’t be sent through a tube system.

“One of our university hospital clients is using Relay to transport infusion medications to patient care areas, freeing up pharmacy staff for more meaningful work,” said Michael Blondin, Vice President of Solutions Management for Swisslog Healthcare.

Able to operate elevators and navigate safely around people and obstacles, Relay can be a secure, trackable component of any comprehensive chain-of-custody program.

Another Swisslog Healthcare client, Hutchinson Health, is utilising the robot to deliver laboratory samples from the outpatient cancer centre to the lab, enabling swift analysis and preparation of chemotherapy medication.