Talyst has introduced AutoCool, the first refrigerated storage system to combine access control with inventory tracking. AutoCool is driven by AutoPharm, software that integrates pharmacy bar coding, storage, inventory, ordering, and clinical systems.

"Hospital pharmacies of all sizes told us they needed a better solution for managing the valuable inventory in their refrigerators," said James E. Torina, President and Chief Executive Officer of Talyst. "When a single vial of an injectable drug can have a value in the hundreds, even thousands of dollars, managing inventory based on real-time data becomes critical."

Each AutoCool unit stores up to 84 items, and multiple units can be daisy-chained to automate all, or a portion of, refrigerated items. Compartments automatically rotate to appear behind seven secure doors that have automated lock releases and lighted indicators. AutoCool limits access to a single item at one time, providing an audit trail for all storage and retrieval activities (personnel access can be controlled by password security). It supports bar code confirmation of all stocking and picking activities, with pick-to-light indicators that guide pharmacy staff through such activities. Twin thermistor sensors provide constant temperature control of refrigerated medications. AutoCool can be installed in remote locations, with remote temperature sensing for the host-workstation.

"Pharmacies are full of inventory silos, with medications and data stored in multiple locations. The refrigerator is one of those silos, separate from the bulk of the inventory data," said Ron Strandin, President of Talyst's Acute Care Group. "AutoCool is a breakthrough in tying the physical security to the real-time pharmacy inventory."