THE way medicines are stocked and dispensed is set to change at West Cumberland Hospital’s Pharmacy - with the introduction of a state-of-the-art robot.

The technology will save valuable time for the pharmacy team and ultimately allow nursing staff on wards to focus more time on caring for patients.

The £350,000 investment made by North Cumbria Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust (NCIC) was delivered to West Cumberland Hospital in February and is up and running this week.

The dispensing robot will help the team maximise efficiency and allow them to enhance the pharmacy service provided to hospitals and community clinics.

The robot is capable of storing and dispensing large quantities of medicine and will put medicines away as well as dispense them to order.

This will eventually allow the pharmacy team to spend more time supporting patients with their medicines.

Paul Fieldhouse, clinical director of pharmacy at NCIC said: “I am looking forward to seeing the benefits that the  robot will bring to the pharmacy team and to our patients across north Cumbria.

“It is good to see this innovation and most up to date technology being introduced at West Cumberland hospital.

"The robot will speed up the process of issuing stock medicines to patients, wards and our community hospitals by using robotically-controlled arms and it will also pick individual items for prescriptions.

“This is a great example of how advancing technology can directly contribute to improving patient care and experience.”