New Memorial Hospital Inpatient Pharmacy designed to connect the present and the future


Ribbon - cutting

When given the opportunity to design the “department of their dreams,” members of the Memorial Inpatient Pharmacy team attended every meeting possible during the past year to describe their vision to the contractors and architects who were designing the new department.

That vision became reality this week as pharmacy leaders and associates surrounded Memorial Hospital President Larry Tracy and Jeanne Anderson, Director of Pharmacy Services, to officially open the new pharmacy following a ribbon cutting.

Take a tour of the new Inpatient Pharmacy at Memorial Hospital.

“There has been tremendous effort, hard work and cooperation by the pharmacy team, construction team and other Memorial associates, as construction impacted several areas of the hospital,” Tracy said. “We are excited that the pharmacy team has a great space to help us all deliver the very best care to the patients we are privileged to serve.”

This marks the completion of the first enabling project for the new 10-story Memorial Patient Tower on the downtown South Bend hospital campus. Tower ground breaking took place in October, although the pharmacy move, energy center relocation and other projects in and around the hospital have seen the most activity to date. Tower construction should be finished in late 2025 and occupancy is expected in early 2026.

The new Inpatient Pharmacy is designed to sync with new and enhanced technologies while modernizing the department to enhance the delivery of pharmaceutical care. Much of the team’s inspiration came from the ability to optimize workflow and efficiencies for the team, which primed the department for future growth and expansion. The new pharmacy represents a 50% increase in square footage from the former pharmacy, and consolidates all of the pharmacy functions into one location.

“We were very fortunate that our project coincided with the new tower construction,” Anderson said. “The timing allowed us to not only fully modernize our pharmacy, but also design it to integrate with the new tower the moment it opens.”

Some key features of the new Memorial Inpatient Pharmacy:

  • A pneumatic tube system that allows for speedy delivery of medicine;
  • Two 15,000-pound pharmaceutical carousels to easily retrieve and restock medications while optimizing inventory management;
  • A sterile compounding suite with a dedicated air handler for temperature, humidity and pressure control; enhancing pharmaceutical product integrity;
  • A dedicated location for receiving, that enhances inventory rotation;
  • Open floorplan that allows increased communication between pharmacists and technicians

The upgraded pneumatic tube system, which will connect to the new tower, connects patient care units with the pharmacy, reducing the need for pharmacy associates to deliver medications to patient floors.

Jeanne Anderson, Director of Pharmacy Services

“The timely delivery of medication to patients is critical, so the new system will increase efficiency,” said Carmelo Pratico, Pharmacy 340B/Procurement Manager.

Another key feature inside the pharmacy are the pharmaceutical carousels that will allow the team to retrieve medications from a single location. The carousel rotates to allow for medication dispensing. The carousels are located behind the open-design main area where spacious counters will allow pharmacists and lab technicians to work side-by-side instead of in different rooms. This will enhance workflow and create a stronger bond between associates.

“This will truly enhance teamwork and enhance workflow,” said Pratico. “We used to be scattered with offices down different halls, but now we will finally all be together in one space. It will make a huge difference in the way we work and communicate with one another.”

Walsh Construction and Creative Design Solutions worked closely with the Memorial Pharmacy team to bring their dream project to life.

The new Inpatient Pharmacy will allow pharmacy associates to continue to deliver outstanding care, inspire health and connect with heart. Knowing they played an important role in designing the new pharmacy gives team members a sense of pride.

“We’ve already heard compliments about the space we’ve created,” said Jody Kirk, Pharmacy Technician Supervisor. “To hear that, and to know that our team helped design this from its conception, is extremely satisfying. This is a pharmacy that will meet our needs and our patients needs for years to come.”

Memorial Hospital Pharmacy Team
Front: Kristi Fisher, Technician Compounding Educator
Second Row (L-R): Jamie Hall, Inpatient Pharmacy Operations Manager; Jody Kirk, Pharmacy Technician Supervisor 
Back Row (L-R): Kirsten Galasso, Manager, Pharmacy Services; Carmelo Pratico, Manager, Pharmacy/340B Procurement; Jeanne Anderson, Director of Pharmacy Services