The main objective of the Pharmacy Department is the safe and efficient use of medication with the utmost excellence. Our Department supports care activity and is recognised as a collaborating centre of the Institute for Safe Medication Practices (ISMP), thanks to our role in preventing medication errors.
Our Department offers a consolidated portfolio of services, and we have a pharmaceutical team that monitors all registered prescriptions and pharmaceutical treatments.
We are responsible for distributing, dispensing and preparing medications with automatised systems and robotics, with one of the most significant technological systems in Europe. We use a system of drug-use indicators based on case histories to assess use of medication. This helps us detect opportunities for improvement, both in terms of security and reducing variability in clinical practice, meaning avoiding differences in the way our staff prescribe treatments.
The Department enjoys ISO 9001-2008 certification, which specifically covers prevention of medication errors. We have established a quality policy aimed at satisfying the needs and expectations of patients, and providing the services that contribute to improving quality of care through personalised attention for effective, efficient and safe drug treatment, while improving our systems.
Our main objective is to ensure our Department continues to contribute value to patients, bearing in mind the conditions at any given time in the Hospital, the Catalan Health Institute and the Catalan Health System in general. For this reason, between 2009 and 2015 we followed a strategic plan that uses the Balanced Scorecard methodology. This strategic plan takes into account new scenarios, social changes and emerging trends, which all necessitated a thorough review of our methodology, in a spirit of critical creativity and continuous improvement.
Rapid evolution in concepts and technology has resulted in the Pharmacy Department receiving several awards and honourable mentions for our clinical innovation and excellence.
Portfolio of services
Guidance in drug use and management
- Promotion and participation in the selection of medication to be used by the Hospital and primary care. For this reason we contributed to the development and help update the "Pharmacotherapeutic Guide", based on criteria of efficacy, quality, need and cost.
- Preparation of clinical guides and treatment protocols agreed with the rest of the Hospital’s clinical departments.
- Assessment of medication use using a system of drug-use indicators. This helps us detect opportunities for improvement, both in terms of security and reducing variability in clinical practice.
- Organisation and participation in continuous training to increase quality in drug treatment decision making: seminars, clinical sessions and courses accredited by the Catalan Council on Continuing Education.
- We also respond to medication inquiries we receive from the Drug Information Centre of the Vall d'Hebron University Hospital Pharmacy Department (CIMSFHUVH). We collaborate with the Catalan Drug Information Centre (CEDIMCAT).
- We produce newsletters.
- We participate in committees where pharmacists’ knowledge can be useful.
- We carry out studies of medication use.
- We draw up technical reports to assess medications, using a proof-based methodology.
Dispensing of medications
- We offer a service for the Dispensing of Medication in Units that is deployed at all beds at Vall d'Hebron University Hospital, and where this is not available, we use automated medication dispensing systems.
- We provide all necessary information on the administration of medications with an electronic nursing file.
- Special dispensing methods for medications in clinical trials, cytostatics, narcotics and compassionate-use drugs.
- Automated distribution systems.
- Alternative distribution/dispensing systems:
- Dispensing with subsequent intervention by pharmacist: replacement by patient
- Dispensing of medications using a protocol by patient (CMA)
Preparation of medications
- Preparation of both magistral and standardised formulas.
- Preparation of special dosing regimes.
- Intravenous therapy unit, with the preparation of: parenteral nutrition and intravenous mixtures
- Re-packaging of oral dosage into unit doses.
- Management of purchases: in the framework of the Law on Public Administration Contracts.
- Management of stock: existence of a single, fully automated, general store (KardexCarroussel (R)), which restocks sub-dispensers located in different buildings, also automated (Kardex (R) vertical), all integrated into the IT system.
- Preparation and monitoring of budgets.
- Clinical management of consumption.
Participation in deciding the treatment plan for patients
- Participation in the multidisciplinary team to help decide medication for treatment, with the safe and efficient use of medicines as the main objective.
- Monitoring of treatment and pharmaceutical intervention (prescription management) and analysis of its impact.
- Conciliation of the medication of patients admitted, adapting home medication to Hospital’s Pharmacotherapeutic Guide after evaluation of the treatment.
- Information and advice on the treatment of discharged patients, with the use of software to create personalised medication planning.
- Clinical pharmacokinetics. Design of individualised posology.
- Lines of pharmacological and clinical specialisation, such as: individualised parenteral nutrition, oncohaematology, antimicrobial therapy, antiretroviral therapy, critical patients, biotechnology, paediatrics, neonatology, and geriatrics.
Dr. Josep Sánchez de Toledo Codina, head of the Paediatric Haematology and Oncology Department, tells us about a Department that has laid the foundations for the specialism in Spain. He also remembers the evolution of transplants from haematopoietic stem cells and progenitors, from the beginning, buying the material at a shop in Barcelona city centre, to the more than 1,200 transplants that have now been performed.
Dr. Francesc Bosch, Head of the Haematology Department, talks about the complexity of the Department, which has turned Vall d’Hebron into a reference centre in haematology thanks to its commitment to transplants and the use of new treatments. The Clinical Trials Unit helps a lot, giving access to treatments for complex patients.
The Master's Degree in Biomedical and Translational Research is an official programme created to train researchers with the requisite combination of scientific knowledge and skills to contribute to the future success of biomedical research.
Fermín Fernández Álvarez, Porter Coordinator, explains the importance of the role these professionals play in the hospital. After 36 years at Vall d’Hebron, Fermín is a real master of the ways things are done. He says that a porter has to combine humility, discretion and safety with a single goal: that patients receive human and friendly treatment.
The constant search for excellence is part of Hospital Vall d’Hebron’s nature. The biggest hospital in Catalonia and the leader in many fields, headed since February 2015 by Dr. Vicenç Martínez Ibáñez, who has a close personal and professional relationship with the Hospital. Dr. Martínez Ibáñez says that if Vall d’Hebron did not exist, it would need to be invented. The current director trained at the hospital, where he was one of the protagonists of an historic moment: the first paediatric liver transplant in Spain. Now, he is committed to continuing this legacy and, always putting the patient first, achieving excellence across all staff.
The Neonatology Department’s Sibling Project is a workshop for the siblings of new-born babies admitted to the Paediatric Intensive Care Unit in the Vall d’Hebron Maternity and Children's Hospital. Through simulated games and situations, the project prepares them to get used to seeing their younger siblings in a hospital medical setting.
Vall d’Hebron University Hospital’s kitchen serves more than 1,000 meals a day, twice a day, not counting breakfast. A reality that José Parrilla and Carmina Esteban know all too well.From three kitchens to one and from coal to gas. That is how the hospital’s catering service has evolved. A place where the needs of each patient must be taken into account and where there is room for small, juicy anecdotes.
The former head of the Thoracic Surgery Department, Dr. Mercè Canela, recently retired, recalls the important evolution of the Department to become a leader in Spain and a lung transplant pioneer. A task made possible thanks to collaboration with professionals from other departments, an added value in the personal and team environment.