Managing access to narcotics and fulfilling duty of care - KEMAS

Handling of drugs and substances

Hospitals and care homes are public spaces, which everyone can enter and leave almost at will. As a result, they are exposed to a number of risks, which would have been unthinkable years ago. Their objective is therefore to reduce the operational risks in these infrastructures, in order to ensure optimal patient care. These risks also include the storage and administration of painkillers and narcotics. Time and again, media report that painkillers and narcotics go missing or are used by unauthorized persons. But any abuse of painkillers and narcotics is a criminal offence.

Every institution designates persons who are responsible for the procurement, storage, issue, and regular inventory control of narcotics. These employees therefore have enormous responsibility for the correct handling of these drugs in the context of the duty of care. The containers for storing the painkillers and narcotics must also be lockable and theft-proof.

Handling of narcotics: clear permissions and controlled drugs cabinet result in transparent access to narcotics and drugs.

Are you familiar with these challenges?

  • During day-to-day operations it occurs that the removal of drugs is not always documented reliably?
  • Narcotics go missing from time to time, despite documentation?

Authorization concept ensures clear responsibilities

After your organization has specified internally which members of the nursing staff are permitted to access which painkillers and narcotics, these permissions are stored in the KEMAS software by the person responsible, and each compartment is associated with a particular drug. The permission is also transferred to the corresponding ID, to ensure that only authorized employees can access the painkillers and narcotics. If a company ID or chip already exists in your institution, this is integrated into the KEMAS solution. During daily operation, the authorized employee then identifies themselves at the KEMAS transfer station and removes the corresponding substance.

Electronic narcotics cabinets for secure storage

Access to narcotics only after identification.

Our KEMAS depot systems have a proven track record as transfer stations for narcotics. They are used as stationary storage locations for the daily supply of narcotics, and can be flexibly positioned on the required wards, such as the vestibule of the operating theatre or a nursing station, in a decentralized manner. Access is limited to a defined group of employees. The compartments do not open without identification by the employee. This means that unauthorized removals are prevented, because all removals are logged. As a result, your institution not only fulfils the legal requirements for the theft proof storage of narcotics, but also the associated duty of care. In the event of a system failure, mechanical emergency unlocking is used to unlock the compartments, which ensures that patient care is maintained.

Electronic logbook complements narcotics documentation

Permissions for your employees who are responsible for painkillers and narcotics on the ward can be issued via the system software settings, to specify which drugs they are allowed to access, and at which location. All processes at the transfer stations are logged - including unauthorized attempts. The absence of narcotics during a predefined time window or access at the "wrong" time are displayed automatically in the software and visualized. If required, it is also possible to establish connections to external systems (such as control centres or security centres), in order to trigger further actions without delay, depending on the incident. Electronic logging therefore perfectly complements the legally required documentation of the administration of narcotics in your facility.

Your benefits:

  • Reduction of losses and the risk of abuse
  • Clear and reliable proof of Access
  • Risk minimization of unauthorized access
  • Fulfillment of the duty of care towards patients and employees
Monika Neuber
Leiterin Vertrieb Innendienst
  • +49 3723 6944-150
  • +49 3723 6944-44


And this is how it works:

Narcotics handling workflow: access at the controlled drugs cabinet is logged.

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