Right ePharmacy closes all Gauteng’s ATM pharmacies after riot destruction
Share this article:
All Right ePharmacy’s ATM pharmacies have been permanently closed in Gauteng after three of the four sites were destroyed in riots, the company said on Tuesday.
Pharmacy Dispensing Units (PDUs), better known as ATM pharmacies, were a health-care pilot project. The project was due to be evaluated in September.
According to Right ePharmacy, ATM pharmacies in Baragwanath Mall in Diepkloof and Ndofaya Mall in Meadowlands, both in Soweto, were destroyed.
The Alexandra ePharmacy was also destroyed during the unrest. The one in Diepsloot in Bambanani Mall is mostly intact. The Free State ePharmacy was unharmed, and business is continuing as usual.
Last week, Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal were gripped by protests and looting. The protesters demanded that former president Jacob Zuma be freed from jail where he is serving 15 months for contempt of court.
Right ePharmacy describes itself as an innovative, strategic solution provider for the dispensing, distribution, and collection of medicine.
Since its inception, the ATM pharmacies in Gauteng have served almost 55 000 patients and dispensed more than 710 000 chronic medicine prescriptions.
“The innovation allowed patients to collect two months’ supply of their medication in under three minutes offering an audiovisual, tele-pharmacy consultation with each visit,” Right ePharmacy said.
The company said its team, in partnership with the Gauteng Department of Health, is assisting affected patients to transfer to other facilities so that they can continue receiving their chronic medication uninterrupted. “Patients are being directed to hospitals, clinics and alternative service providers," it said.
According to Right ePharmacy, no patient records were compromised as all data was secured in a cloud-based record.
Right ePharmacy managing director Fanie Hendriksz said: “We remain committed to the development of ATM pharmacy technology, our other innovations and successful projects such as the Collect & Go smart lockers, in-pharmacy automation, and centralised dispensing facilities to continue positively impacting the lives of patients in Africa.
“We are grateful to our funders, partners and shareholders, Right to Care, United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), and the Global Fund for making it possible to actualise innovative solutions that positively impact the lives of patients on the continent,” said Hendriksz.
Right ePharmacy said it was is in discussion with several parties including other provinces, private sector health-care companies, and other African and international providers which are interested in deploying its ATM pharmacy technology.
Last week, Clicks pharmacy said a total of 279 stores closed and 52 stores were damaged during the unrest. in addition, 106 vaccination sites had been closed across the country.
Dis-chem, which has 20 stores in KZN, also announced on Twitter that it had closed all its pharmacies, vaccination sites, and drive-through testing facilities.
BUSINESS REPORT ONLINE