Just What the Doctor Ordered

Article from MHI Solutions Magazine

Automated solutions streamline operations in the pharmaceutical and health-products industry.

Mark Cuban, the billionaire entrepreneur and television personality, made big news last January when his Cost Plus Drug Co. launched its online pharmacy, selling generic medications wholesale to retailers and directly to consumers paying in cash.

By limiting its profit margin to 15% and cutting middlemen out of the supply chain, Cost Plus Drug Co. intends to be a lifeline to uninsured and underinsured Americans who struggle to pay for their medications. But there’s more to this story than cost savings.

Cost Plus Drug Co. was scheduled in November to open its $11 million manufacturing plant in Dallas. The 22,000-square-foot facility has been described as an “all-robotic plant” by news organizations such as Forbes. It will enable the company to manufacture medications that other drug companies deem unprofitable or that it can’t procure from other manufacturers. It also will allow the company to respond rapidly to drug shortages and to combat price-gouging.

These ambitious plans wouldn’t be possible without the major advancements in material-handling technology that are changing the way prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications and health care products are sold.

Whether it’s through robotic piece-picking and packing solutions, automated storage and retrieval systems (ASRS) or totes that keep drugs refrigerated, new technology is helping patients get the health care products they need faster and more cheaply than could possibly be achieved through manual operations. . .

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