A Bristol-based pharmacist believes his new tech platform could do for the pharmacy sector what Uber has done for the taxi industry.
Tariq Muhammad began life as a self-employed pharmacist before going on to set up Pharmacy Plus, which acquired 25 pharmacies across the South West by 2002.
An early adopter of technology he oversaw the development of the Proactive Care System, the first electronic barcoding system for medication to replace paper medicines administration records.
After Pharmacy Plus Muhammad set up Invatech Health, which has just received NHS accreditation for its cloud-based and ground-breaking Patient Medication Record (PMR) system known as Titan.
Billed as the pharmacy’s equivalent of Uber for taxis, Titan offers pharmacists a single solution for managing end-to-end workflow, including safe medicine dispensing, control over business activities and reporting, and potential for full integration with other pharmacy applications.
Its creator said it will free up pharmacists and GPs to spend more time with patients.
“Technology in pharmacy hasn’t moved with the times,” he said. “Most pharmacies have chaotic back offices, using systems which were developed 16 years ago. It’s all done manually, making a production line which is incapable of meeting the expectations of customers while pharmacists’ skills are wasted putting labels on boxes when they could be helping patients.
“We believe the processes we’ve created can save 80 per cent of the pharmacist’s time, freeing them up to do better work, consultation, administering medicines – all the work which they wanted to do when they started pharmacy.
“We’re fundamentally different to all other PMRs – ours is not a single station, it’s an entire operating system and a multi-device platform. It’s offering a new way of life for pharmacists. Titan is operating on a cloud-based platform and that, alongside the way we work with our application programming interface (API), is a first for the sector.”
The new system, which has been designed by Invatech Health over three years, has just received the prestigious Electronic Prescription Service (EPS) R2 accreditation and is now available for use at all pharmacies in England and Wales.
“Titan is the ‘how’ to the problem that everyone in our sector recognises,” said Muhammad. “It can help to deliver the vision that everyone wants, while bringing benefits across the NHS and the health sector.
He is initially targeting some 6,000 independent and small group pharmacists in England and Wales, although he has had interest from larger corporates with tendering processes already underway.
“The small chains and independents are the ones which will most benefit from Titan and are the type of pharmacy I’m passionate about helping,” said Muhammad. “They have been greatly deprived from the advances in technology seen in other sectors and have not had the resources to optimise their businesses like the larger chains.
“Titan’s going to be a winner for everyone, for pharmacists and for patients, and we’re excited, as well as passionate, about its potential.”