Mass Compounding

We were taken to the portion of the hospital where compounding of several types of traditional Chinese medicines was performed to be used in the outpatient setting. The building where this takes place is a sterile area and required us to change into special gowns, as well as wear a hair cover and new shoes. We observed around 8-10 workers who were preparing containers for an anti-itch ointment. They all sat at one table and placed labels that had the medication name (Benadryl cream 2% + herbal supplement) and amount in grams (40g) on each cap. After all the stickers were placed, the work team moved on to preparing an oral solution for cough called Fufang Gancao Koufu Rongye. When we were in the outpatient pharmacy previously, we saw this oral solution mass stocked on the shelf and were told it was very popular. We were now able to observe the process of how it was made. The team worked together to dump large amounts of the medication from eighty bottles into one tank which functioned to mix the medications together. After this was finished, the team went into the stock room and obtained packaged bottles which would serve as individual reservoirs for the medication. It was interesting to see the amount of labor required to mass produce these compounded products and how it ran similar to a factory style workflow. We can assume the demand of these traditional Chinese medications is very high, requiring many people to work and meet the requirements of the hospital.

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