McKesson Corp. will sell its Pittsburgh-based Pharmacy Automation unit to investment firm Francisco Partners in San Francisco for an undisclosed sum.

McKesson in May 2013 announced that, as part of a realignment of its Technology Solutions division, it would divest the hospital pharmacy unit, which offers a range of robotic and information systems to automate in-house pharmacy units in hospitals and delivery systems. The retail pharmacy business within McKesson Automation is not part of the sale and remains with McKesson. The hospital business being sold serves about 1,000 hospitals in the United States and Canada.

Pharmacy Solutions’ product line includes the Robot-Rx and PROmanager-Rx automated dispensing systems, as well as medication carousels, bar code packaging systems, inventory tracking software, automated dispensing cabinets for nursing units, anesthesia carts, a controlled substances management system, analytics-supported decision support and fulfillment services.

Chris Adams, a principal at Francisco Partners, says the firm will work with Pharmacy Automation’s current leadership to expand the business as a standalone company. “We will maintain a close working relationship with McKesson Corporation to ensure that the companies’ collective solutions for hospitals and healthcare providers are complementary and effective.”

Francisco Partners’ health care information technology holdings include API Healthcare (workforce management), Healthland (community hospital HIS), NexTech (specialty specific PPM/EHR), Quantros (risk/quality/performance management), TSystem (emergency department) and Therapeutic Research Center (drug therapy content).

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