Public healthcare patients can now collect medication from e-lockers

Patients can access their medication using a unique one-time pin.

Public healthcare patients with stable chronic conditions won’t have to wait in queues anymore to collect their medication, as e-lockers have launched in the metro.

The Collect and Go e-lockers are medicine-dispensing units which will allow patients to collect their monthly medicine. The e-lockers have been launched as a pilot project at 11 healthcare facilities.

The lockers are fitted with air-conditioning units with remote temperature monitors for optimal storage conditions.

A view of the e-lockers at the District Six Community Day Centre.

E-lockers project manager, Gillian Makota, said patients who sign up for the service will receive an SMS with a one-time PIN (OTP) to collect their monthly medication parcel.

“The e-locker consists of a console unit with pigeon holes (like a post office box) to load and unload medicine parcels. Patients receive an SMS notification with a one-time PIN to collect medicine at the patient collecting unit (e-locker). Using the touchscreen interface, patients will enter their one-time PIN code and the specific locker door opens. The patient can then collect their medicines safely and securely,” she explained.

When it’s time for patients to receive a new prescription, an SMS will be sent to remind the patient of the collection.

It is important that patients provide the correct cellphone number to access their medication from the Collect & Go E-lockers.

Residents can collect their medication without any face-to-face contact, keeping themselves, fellow patients and healthcare staff safe.

“The lockers are Covid-19 friendly. While it allows us to safely deliver medication, it also improves patient access to pre-dispensed medication parcels, which means that patients do not have to go queue at the facilities for medicine collection and this reduces waiting time. It also offers convenient times for medicine collection, with 24-hour access to the facilities. In addition to this, it means that we can retain patients in our care and promote adherence to treatment,” said Ms Makota.

Public healthcare patients who have chronic conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure, HIV, asthma and other conditions can register at their local healthcare facility. Patients must be evaluated and declared clinically stable by a clinician, who then enrols the patient to access the programme.

Residents are encouraged to use the service which has also been launched in Gauteng, Free State, Mpumalanga and Limpopo.

The lockers are supported by a call centre to deal with any issues that may arise. Patients who have enquiries about the service can contact their local healthcare facility or the call centre by using the toll-free helpline at 080 001 4945.

Where to access collect and go e-lockers

The e-lockers are placed in 11 facilities across the metro as part of the pilot phase of the project.

These facilities include:

• Heideveld Community Health Centre

• Gugulethu Community Health Centre

• Mitchells Plain Community Health Centre

• Khayelitsha District Hospital

• Eerste River Hospital

• Nomzamo Community Health Centre

• Kraaifontein Community Health Centre

• Delft Community Health Centre

• Elsies River Community Health Centre

• District Six Community Day Centre

• Lady Michaelis Community Day Centre