Prime Minister of Tasmania – Hospital pharmacy stocks are being boosted as part of Tasmania’s reconnect plan

November 13, 2021

Jeremy Rockliff, Minister of Health

Stocks of hospital medicines in Tasmania have more than doubled since the start of the pandemic.

This is just one of the measures put in place to ensure the health and safety of Tasmanians ahead of the reopening of borders on December 15.

Tasmania’s hospitals currently hold $13.4 million worth of drugs – an increase from $5.8 million before the pandemic.

For the majority of drugs, this will allow hospitals to continue providing acute care, including keeping state intensive care units operating for two to three months, even if supply chains are interrupted.

As part of the increase in drug stocks, two secure backup facilities have been established, which contain $1.2 million worth of drugs specifically allocated for the treatment of patients with COVID-19.

This emergency stock is sufficient to treat 280 concurrent patients, from mild to severe illness, from admission to discharge, and is in addition to the two to three month supply of critical care and hospital drug stocks held by the HRT.

Other drug supplies are held with local and interstate wholesalers.

The drug list is reviewed regularly against emerging evidence and national guidelines, and plans are in place to quickly replenish the inventory if needed.

Tasmania also holds specific COVID-19 treatments such as remdesivir on behalf of the Australian government’s National Medicines Stockpile.

Tasmania’s Health Service is also continuing its free home medicine delivery service across the state to support social distancing by allowing patients to receive their regular medicines in hospital only without visiting the premises of the public hospital.

And Tasmania has rolled out the most recent statewide implementation of Wi-Fi-connected SmartPump IV infusion pumps and syringe pumps, representing a significant leap forward in patient safety. .

The HRT Pharmacy Project team recently received an Innovation Award for this project from the Society of Hospital Pharmacists of Australia.

These new smart infusion pumps download drug dosage information via Wi-Fi from a central database that contains a comprehensive library of drugs and doses used by HRT.

The SmartPump guides doctors and nurses to safely calculate, prepare and administer intravenous medications.
Over 2014 SmartPumps have been installed across the Tasmania Health Service, replacing its fleet of manually programmed IV infusion pumps.

These initiatives are an important part of preparing the health system to reconnect Tasmania, which prioritizes the health and safety of Tasmanians.

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