Analysis of the time devoted to the circuit of hospital preparations for anticancer agents

L. Hachon , M. Moine, A. Martinet, N. Robert, D. Sankhare, J. Nicoulaud,
I. Madelaine, N. Jourdan-Desrayaud
Pharmacy - Anticancer agents’ preparation unit, Saint-Louis Hospital, Greater Paris University Hospitals, Paris


Hospital anticancer preparations (HP) manufacture in advance helps to smooth the activity. Batch size varies from 12 to 40 units depending on the process (manual with 1 hospital pharmacy technician (HPT) or by distribution pump with 2 HPT). 4 campaigns are produced per day.


Analyze the time spent on this circuit.

Material and methods

For 2 months, the steps of the HP campaigns were measured: preparation of the equipment and of the anticancer drugs (from knowledge of the batch file to the installation of the material in the insulator), manufacture (from installation in gloves to the last HP packed), batch control and traceability, and analyzed according to the manufacturing process and the size of the batch.


108 batches (13 PH campaigns, 2111 units released) were monitored.

21% of the time is devoted to the preparation of the material, 69% to the manufacture and 10% to the release. Campaigns with a pump are longer, with a larger number of anticancer drug vials and HP produced (22.4 ± 13.0 vs 18.4 ± 6.9 vials, 27.3 ± 9.9 vs 14.1 ± 1.4 units per batch). The unit time dedicated to preparation and manufacturing is less important with the pump.

Discussion and conclusion

HP manufacture by campaign ensures an important production in a controlled time. The unit calculations confirm the advantage of the automated process. HPT must have 53 minutes to make a manual batch or 79 minutes for a batch with pump. These 3 stages are independent: the 20 minutes of material preparation are anticipated and carried out the day before the campaign. This circuit optimizes the time allocation of HPT, logistical and material resources.

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