Operation of an emergency department satellite pharmacy in which the pharmacist provided clinical, educational, and drug distribution services during patient visits is described. In a Detroit trauma and ambulatory-care center, drugs were dispensed to outpatients 24 hours a day from a satellite pharmacy located in the 75-bed emergency department. Emergency department pharmaceutical services were expanded to include distributive, clinical, and educational activities by the pharmacist on a 24-hour basis. The pharmacist contributed to improved inventory control and billing for drug products. When reductions in the work force were necessary, the institution chose to retain 24-hour pharmacist coverage during emergency department patient visits and to eliminate 24-hour dispensing to outpatients. In this urban trauma center, the emergency department pharmacist's clinical, distributive, and educational services contributed substantially to delivery of patient care.
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