Torsten Hoppe-Tichy, Heidelberg University Hospital
Q: Can you provide an overview of your pharmacy and your role there?
A: I am a Chief Pharmacist at Heidelberg University Hospital, one of the largest hospital pharmacies in Germany. We specialize in cancer therapy, organ transplantation, and rare diseases in children. With a turnover of €160 million solely in drugs, we have a staff of 140. Our pharmacy is involved in extensive cytotoxic reconstitution and other critical services such as total parenteral nutrition and capsule preparation for children.
Due to staffing shortages, we have implemented automation to assist with cytotoxic reconstitution. We currently utilize two robots and automatic syringe fillers. We are also exploring the potential of 3D printing technology to revolutionize the dosages and oral dosage forms for children. This is particularly important for addressing staff shortages.
Q: How do you believe 3D printing technology can improve the daily lives of pharmacists and benefit patients?
A: Let's consider the current process of administering medication to a young child. Typically, we produce a capsule with the appropriate dosage, which parents then open and mix the powder into the child's food. There are various challenges associated with this method, such as ensuring the child consumes the entire dose and accounting for the heat that may affect the pharmaceutical ingredient.
If we can develop an oral dosage form that the child can easily accept without the need for additional steps, such as pouring the powder into food, it is a significant advancement. This greatly improves dosage accuracy for children and enhances patient safety. 3D printing of drugs offers a new technology that can help us achieve this goal.
Ultimately, it is about ensuring the safety of children during drug therapy.
Q: What are the main reasons for pharmacies to adopt CurifyLabs' technology?
A: Personalized dosages are a key driver for pharmacies. For children, this is crucial for patient safety. Additionally, by implementing this technology, we can alleviate the workload of our pharmacy technicians, especially in cases where there is a shortage of technicians. It is essential to have a technology that enables us to produce drugs for patients without overburdening our staff.