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Publication numberUS3752359 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateAug 14, 1973
Filing dateFeb 28, 1972
Priority dateFeb 28, 1972
Publication numberUS 3752359 A, US 3752359A, US-A-3752359, US3752359 A, US3752359A
InventorsShaw J
Original AssigneeShaw J
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Programmed dispensers
US 3752359 A
Abstract
The programmed dispenser for pharmaceuticals disclosed herein employs a cabinet containing a plurality of individually coded drawers each having a pharmaceutical magazine cooperative with a dispensing slide means, and an indexed selector means adapted to periodically receive the cabinet to thereby operate a slide means and dispense one or the prescribed number of pharmaceuticals from a magazine.
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United States Patent Shaw Aug. 14, 1973 PROGRAMMED DISPENSERS Prima Examiner-Stanley H. Tollberg [76] Inventor. Joseph Denman Shaw, 508 Church W St., Brownsville, Pa. 15417 Mum) [22] Filed: Feb. 28, 1972 57 ABS CT [21] Appl. No.: 229,770 1 The programmed dispenser for pharmaceuticals disclosed herein employs a cabinet containing a plurality [52] :LS. CI. 221/5, 221/94 of individually coded drawers each having a pharma [lt- Cl. ceutical magazine cooperative a dispensing slide [58] Field of Search 221/4, 5, 65, 87, means and an indexed selector means adapted to verb 22l/92 94 odically receive the cabinet to thereby operate a slide means and dispense one or the prescribed number of [56] Ree'ences Cited pharmaceuticals from a magazine.

UNITED STATES PATENTS 6/1964 Kireta 221/94 1 PROGRAMMER) DISPENSERS This invention relates to programmed dispensers adapted to allocate for individual consumption medication, pharmaceuticals and other medical or dental items at predetermined times and in prescribed amounts.

An object of the invention is to provide a novel and positive functioning dispenser that is readily programmed and is operated to present, at particular times, the exact amount of medication or pharmaceutical items for each of a plurality of patients.

Another object of the invention is to provide a programmed dispenser having means for holding a stack of hospital or dental items combined with a programmed slide mechanism adapted to discharge a prescribed number of items from the stack into a dispensing position at a predetermined time.

According to another aspect of this invention a dispensing slide is provided for each of a series of cabinet contained drawers which are coded to cooperated with a decoding case to dispense a prescribed number of hospital or dental items from a stack in each drawer upon movement of the cabinet into the decoding case at predetermined times.

For a better understanding of the invention reference should be had to the accompanying drawings which illustrate preferred embodiements thereof, and wherein like reference numerals indicate similar parts throughout the several views.

In the drawings:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of one form of my programmed dispenser depicted in a coded but nondispensing position; several wall portions being broken away and shown in section.

FIGS. 2 and 3 are sections taken longitudinally through the central portion of the programmed dispenser shown in FIG. 1, the parts in the Figures being illustrated in decoded, non-dispensing and dispensing positions, respectively.

FIGS. 4 and 5 are fragmentalsections taken on lines 44 and 55, respectively, of FIG. 3.

FIG. 6 is section like FIG. 2 showing a modification of the dispenser depicted in FIGS. 1-5 of the drawings.

FIG. 7 is a fragmental, front elevational view of a modified form of my programmed dispenser adapted to dispense hospital or dental items of various shapes.

FIG. 8 is a section taken on line 88 of FIG. 7.

FIG. 9 is a section taken on line 9-9 of FIG. 8.

FIG. 10 is a fragmental section taken on line 10-10 of FIG. 7.

FIG. 11 is a fragmental, front elevational view of another modified form of my programmed dispenser.

FIG. 12 is a section taken on line l2--12 of FIG. 11.

FIG. 13 is a section taken on line 13-13 of FIG. 12.

FIG. 14 is a central section through a still further modified form of my programmed dispenser.

FIG. 15 is a fragmental section on line 1515 of FIG. 14.

FIG. 16 is a plan view of an item adapter particularly useful with my programmed dispenser shown in FIGS. 7 and 10 of the drawings.

FIG. 17 is a section on line 17-17 of FIG. 16.

FIGS. 18 and 19 are plan views of modified forms of the adapter shown in FIGS. 16 and 17 of the drawings.

With particular reference to FIGS. 1-5 of the drawings the numeral 22 refers to a rectangular, decoding case similar to the case depicted in my copending patent application for Programmed Dispenser filed Dec. 17, 1970 and given Ser. No. 99,165 by the Patent 0ffice (continuation application filed Apr. 3, 1972, Ser. No. 240,869). This case 22 is open at the front and has internal dimensions adapted to snugly and slidably receive a portable cabinet 23. A bottom wall 24 of the case has a lateral shoulder 25 formed thereon which acts as a limit stop fixing the fully inserted position of the cabinet in the case. Opposed side walls 26 and 27 of the decoding case are each provided with a vertical slot 28 and 29, respectively, formed through the rear portions thereof to receive a laterally slidable, time selector board 30. As best shown in FIG. 1 the board has a number of pins 31 projecting at right angles from one major face thereof, said pins being preferably arranged in a lateral row and vertically off center with respect to the width of the board, said board being adapted for controlled, intermittent lateral movement across the inside rear portion of the decoding case by a suitable indexing means 32 mounted in a bottom corner of the case and cooperative with each of a row of time related teeth 33 and 343 formed on diagonally opposed corner portions of the selector board.

The cabinet 22 has a number of horizontally disposed compartments 35 formed therein, each being adapted to slidably receive a drawer 36 that has a hand pull 37 and an index card frame 38 on its front wall 39. A marginal intumed flange is provided on the back of the cabinet to act as a limit stop determining the fully inserted position of each drawer in the cabinet. Each drawer includes a graduated ejector member which takes the form of a top wall 40 having a longitudinal row of uniformly spaced apart medication receiving pockets 41 therein. Each of said rows is in registery with the delivery end of a magazine in the form of a vertical tube 42 mounted on a top wall 43 of the cabinet 23 and adapted to hold a stack of items to be dispensed, such as medication in the form of disc-shaped pills 44. This magazine is gravity operated but it is contemplated that the items could be spring urged toward its discharge end without a departure from the spirit of the invention. The front edge portion of the decoding case 22 is provided with clearance slots 45 to freely receive the tubes 42 when the cabinet 23 is slid into the fully closed, decoded position within the case 22; as illustrated in FIG. 2 of the drawings.

Each drawer 36 is provided with a lateral wall such as a back wall 4% having two vertically spaced, lateral rows of coding holes 4S7 and 48 formed therethrough, selected holes being adapted to frictionally and detachably hold program plugs 49 of different lengths, which cooperate with the pins 31 on the selector board 30 to provide means of predetermined longitudinal extents which push a drawer a selected distance out of the cabinet when the latter is fully inserted into the case 22.

Individual drawers 36 are each initially identified by the pharmacist, or other authorized person, by filling out an index card with a patients name and room number abd inserting the card into the frame 38 on said drawer. The proper number and kinds of medication are stacked in the magazine 42 of that drawer and finally the back of each drawer is programmed to dispense the stacked medication therein in the amounts and at predetermined times by inserting a plug or plugs 49 of proper lengths into selected places in the rows of holes 47 and 48 in the back wall of the drawer. When all the cabinet drawers are identified, filled, programmed and fully slid into the cabinet, said cabinet is transported to say, a nurses station, on a hospital floor and at predetermined indexed times marked on the selector board and the drawer backs, the cabinet will be fully inserted into the decoding case 22 and stopped by the shoulder 25. if no medication is to be dispensed at that particular time from a particular drawer, the pin 31, on the selector board, will not contact a plug 49 on the back of said drawer as indicated in FIG. 2 of the drawings, and the drawer will remain within the cabinet in non-dispensing position but if, for example, three medical items 44 are to be dispensed to a patient at that time the pin 31 will cooperate to engage a program plug 49 of sufficient length to push the drawer outwardly whereby three items will be carried from beneath the stack of pills44 by the pockets 41 and be moved longitudinally out of the cabinet and presented for dispensation, as indicated in FIG. 3 of the drawings. Each pocket has a thumbnail entrance slot 50 formed in the top wall 40 of the drawer at the periphery of the pocket for ready removal of the pill 44 therefrom.

After this dispensing operation the cabinet is removed from the case, all the drawers are closed and the cabinet is then in readiness for the next following dispensing operation.

It is to be noted that the vertical slot 28 in the decoding case 22 is provided with two through slots 51 and 52, (FIG. 1), that the horizontal row of pins 31 on the time selector board 30 are vertically removed from the horizontal centerline of the board and that the board is calibrated in AM and PM hours opposite the teeth 33 and 34, respectively. Also, the rows of coding holes 47 and 48 (FIG. 4) are calibrated in AM and PM hours, respectively. The pins 31 are disposed on the time selector board 30 one to a drawer, whereby the board serves as a selector for both AM and PM" periods by merely reversing it end for end in the slots 28 and 29 and manually advancing it laterally in accordance with the indexing means 32 which, in the illustrated example, is for periods of 3 hours. The indexing means and the codes on the drawers could be calibrated for other time periods such as an 8 hour day, or the like.

With reference to FIG. 3 of the drawings it will be further understood that by controlling the presence or absence and the lengths of the plugs 49 in the: rows of coding holes 47 and 48 one or more pharmaceutical items will be dispensed from a particular drawer (FIG. 3) or no drug will be dispensed if the particular hole has no plug in it as is indicated in FIG. 2 of the drawings.

Now with reference to FIG. 6 of the drawings it will be see that pockets 53, similar to pockets 41 for the dispenser shown in FIGS. 1-5, are located in a bottom wall 54 of the drawer 36 and that said drawer is open at the top 55. A magazine 56 is mounted in the cabinet 23 and depends from the top wall 43 of the cabinet into the drawer through the open top 55. A stack of pills, or the like, is loaded into the magazine from its opened top 57 when the cabinet is out of the decoding case 22 and when the drawer is properly programmed by insertion of plugs 49 in selected holes 47 and/or 48 and the cabinet entered in to the decoding case, the drawer may be pushed outwardly from the cabinet thereby moving a required number of pills from the bottom of the stack into the pockets 53 and thence into dispensing positions. Each pocket 53 has a hole 58 formed in the bottom to provide a means for readily removing a pill from its pocket.

Referring now to FIGS. 7-l0 of the drawings a modified form of my programmed dispenser is adapted to dispense either cylindrical or flat items having regular or irregular shapes in plan as required for dental or hospital uses. This device also comprises the cabinet 23 having a number of compartments 35 for slidably receiving drawers 136 and 236, each drawer including a coded laterally disposed back wall 59 that has sliding face-wise movement within its respective drawer. The cabinettis operatively associated with the decoding case 22 in the same manner and for the same purposes heretofore described with respect to the dispenser depicted in FIGS. 1-6 of the drawings, it being noted that a rotatable catch 122 is mounted on the front of the cabinet to maintain each drawer in fully closed position during the dispensing operation.

As best illustrated in FIGS. 7-8 of the drawings the drawer 136 is open at the top and the front interior portion thereof has a hopper 60 positioned therein and formed with downwardly inclined bottom walls 61 and 62 that communicate with a centrally located vertical magazine 63 for holding in dispensing condition cylindrically shaped items 64 in the nature of pill bottles, or the like. A front wall 65 of the drawer 136 is provided with a vertical discharge opening 66 that is in registry with the magazine 63 and has a dimension adapted to permit discharge of one or a plurality of items 64 held in the magazine 63. Across the discharge opening are preferrably disposed a number of resilient fingers 67 biased to normally preclude discharge of the items held in the magazine, each finger being preferrably positioned across the discharge path of a single item in the magazine. The fingers are connected to a base plate 68 best stamped from flat resilient stock, said plate being mounted on the front wall 65 to one side of the opening 66. It will therefore be understood that l have provided an expandable keeper for the discharge opening 66 in the drawer that is resiliently biased to normally close said opening by restricting passage of items therethrough but which is responsive to item pressure to pass one or a selected number of items through said opening and hold said item or items in presented, dispensing positions in front of the drawer.

In this modification the coded laterally disposed back wall 59 instead of being stationary in the drawer is mounted for face-sise, longitudinal movement within the rear portion of the drawer 136. A graduated ejector in the form of a stepped pusher member 69 has its rear edge fastened to the forward face of the back wall, said pusher being firmly secured to the back wall by means of braces 70-70. As best shown in FIGS. 8 and 9 the back wall has stabilizing flanges 71 and 72 extending at right angles from the edges thereof and in sliding engagement with the inside opposed surfaces of the sidewalls for the drawer; a bottom flange 73 being formed on the back wall and fastened in a notch 74 in the rear lower edge of the pusher member 69. Steps 75 in the forward edge of the pusher member have riser portions corresponding to the diameters of the items 64 in the magazine except the lowest step which has a riser portion that is half a diameter of the items to insure clearance of each step from the item next above it. An item supporting arm 76 normally extends from the lower front part of the pusher member to beneath the lowermost item in the magazine and terminates forwardly of the front wall 65 of the drawer.

As in the modification shown in FIGS. l-6 of the drawings a program plug 49 of predetermined longitudinal extent is secured in a selected coding hole or holes 47 and 48 in the back wall 59 of the drawer (FIG. 8) and when the cabinet 23 is fully inserted into the decoding case 22 as is depicted in dotted lines in said Figure, the back wall 59 of the drawer 136 will move forwardly within the drawer latched in the cabinet by catch 122 and advance the pusher member 69 forwardly, thereby axially moving one or more of the items 64 in the magazine outwardly against the fingers 67, expanding the fingers and resiliently holding one or more of the items exteriorally of the drawer for dispensatlon.

ln FIGS. 7 and 10 there is shown a slight modification of my invention wherein the drawer 236 is provided with a magazine 77 for holding a stack of flat and preferrably disc-shaped items 78 and having an expandable discharge opening 79 formed in the front wall which is normally closed by resiliently biased spring fingers 80 that restrict the passage of items through the opening except in response to item pressure thereon programmed for dispensation by the method heretofore described.

Now with reference to FIGS. 11-13 of the drawings there is shown a device programmed to dispense conventional syrings 81, or other hospital or dental items having elongated, cylindrical forms. These syrings are substantially uniformly cylindrical throughout their longitudinal extents by fitting detachable tubes 181 FIG. 12) over the hollow injection needles therefor. This device includes an inclined magazine 82 fed by a number of communicating zig-zag ramps 83 and 84, an inclined discharge opening 86 being formed in the front wall 187 of a drawer 88 in registry with the discharge opening 86. The opening 86 is normally closed by spring fingers 87 to preclude discharge of the items except when programmed for axial dispensation by longitudinal movement of the pusher member 69 operated by the programmed dispensing method described above. Because of the relative longer lengths of the syringes only their forward ends are exposed when resiliently held in dispensing position thus not being dependent on the presence of the arm 76 for support as in the device depicted in FIGS. 7-10 of the drawings.

FIGS. 14 and 15 of the drawings show a programmed device like that shown in FIG. 7-9 of the drawings with the exception that a plurality of horizontal rows of coding holes 89,90 and 91 are formed in the back wall 59 of the drawer 65. As best shown in FIG. 15 of the drawings the holes in the rows are in vertical alignment and the vertical rows of coding holes are labeled by the numerals 1,2 and 3 corresponding to the number of items to be dispensed at a particular time, while the horizontal rows of holes are calibrated to represent the hours of the day when items may be dispensed. By mounting three pins 131 on different lengths in the time selector board 30 in vertical alignment, it is only necessary to place uniform plugs 49 in the proper coding holes in the rows to program the dispenser to discharge the proper number of items at the proper times with the programmed dispensing system described hereinabove.

In FIGS. 16 and 17 of the drawings there is shown a conventional blister package 92 for medication which is provided with an adapter 93 in the form of a flat disc,

the disc body having a recess 94 formed centrally therethrough to receive the blister package 92. The marginal flange 95 of the package is adhesively secured to a major face 96 of the adapter whereby the composite item is conditioned for dispensation with the modification of my invention shown in FIGS. 7 and 10 of the drawings. The reference numeral 97 (FIG. 18) identifies a disc-shaped adapter having a recess 98 therein for loosely receiving a pill form 99, said disc and pill being enclosed in a sterile plastic cover 100. As illustrated in FIG. 19 other items forms may be dispensed with the invention shown in FIGS. 7 and 10 such as the flat rectangular adapter 101 which has a pill form 102 wedged within an irregular recess 103 formed centrally in the adapter body.

What is claimed is:

1. A programmed dispenser of the class described comprising;

a. a generally rectangular cabinet having a number of compartments therein for slidably receiving a plurality of drawers,

b. a lateral wall for each drawer having a lateral coding means thereon,

c. an item containing magazine associated with each drawer,

d. means urging the items toward the discharge end of the magazine,

e. a graduated ejector member connected to the lateral wall of each drawer and adapted to take off an item or items from the discharge end of the magazine and move said item or items into a dispensing position; the number of items dispensed being in direct proportion to the extent of movement of the ejector member,

f. a decoding case having an open front adapted to slidably receive the cabinet therethrough,

g. a time selector mounted for intermittent lateral movement in the rear of the decoding case, and having a cooperative code means on its forward face,

h. and means of predetermined, longitudinal extents selectively positioned between the coding means on each drawer and the cooperative code means on the time selector, whereby to move the ejector member a predetermined distance when the cabinet is slid into fully inserted position in the decoding case.

2. The programmed dispenser set forth in claim 1 wherein the item containing magazine is an upstanding tube mounted on the cabinet, and the graduated ejector member is a series of equally spaced apart pockets formed in a horizontal wall of each drawer and in registry with the bottom of the magazine.

3. The programmed dispenser set forth in claim 1 wherein the lateral coding means on the lateral wall of each drawer is a lateral row of holes for selectively receiving program plugs of different lengths, and the selector member has plug engaging pins of equal lengths positioned on its major face.

4. The programmed dispenser set forth in claim 1 wherein the lateral coding means on the lateral wall of each drawer is a series of vertically spaced lateral rows of plug receiving holes, and the selector member has a vertical row of pins of different lengths positioned on its major face.

5. The programmed dispenser set forth in claim 1 characterized by the fact that the magazine is tubular in section and contains a stack of items therein, each item constituted by a flat adapter having a medication holding recess formed therein.

6. The programmed dispenser set forth in claim wherein the adapter has a regular contour in plan.

7. The programmed dispenser set forth in claim 5 wherein the medication is in a blister package.

8. The programmed dispenser set forth in claim 5 wherein the adapter has an irregular contour in plan.

9. A programmed dispenser of the class described comprising;

a. a generally rectangular cabinet having a number of compartments therein for slidably receiving a plurality of drawers,

b. a back wall slidable face-wise within each drawer and having a lateral coding means thereon,

c. a front wall for each drawer having discharge opening formed therethrough,

d. means associated with the forward portion of each drawer forming an item containing magazine, said magazine being disposed in registry with the discharge opening in each drawer,

e. means urging the items toward the discharge end of the magazine,

f. an expandable keeper biased to normally close the discharge opening and responsive to item pressure thereon to pass a seiected number of items through the opening into dispensing position,

g. a graduated ejector member connected to the back wall of each drawer and adapted to take off an item or items from the discharge end of the magazine, the number of items taken off being in direct proportion to the extent of movement of the ejector member, 7

h. a decoding case having an open front and adapted to dlidably receive the cabinet therethrough,

i. a time selector member mounted for intermittent lateral movement in the rear of the decoding case.

j. and means of predetermined longitudinal extents selectively positioned between the coding means of each drawer and the selector member whereby to move the ejector a predetermined distance when the cabinet is slid into its fully inserted position within the decoding case.

10. The programmed dispenser set forth in claim 9 wherein the expandable keeper comprises spring fingers each associated with an item in the magazine, and the graduated ejector is a pusher member having a number of steps formed in its forward edge, each step having a riser adapted to engage one item at a time.

11. The programmed dispenser set forth in claim 10 wherein the pusher member has an arm projecting forwardly from the forward edge, beneath the lowermost item in the magazine and beyond the front wall of the drawer.

$27 33 UNITED STATES ATENT omee emme Patent No. 3 752 359 D t August 14 1973 Inventor(s) Joseph Denma'n Shaw It is certified that error appears in the above-identified patent and that said Letters Patent are hereby corrected as shown below:

Column 6, line 37 qga'ncel -"a time" and insert an indexed-" Column 6, line 44 cancel time',

Column 8, line 9 cancel "a time" and insert -=an indeXed-.

Signed and sealed this 20th day of November 1973'.

(SEAL) Attest:

EDWARD M.FLETGHER,JR. RENE D TEGTMEYER Attesting Officer Aoting'flommissioner of Patents

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3138287 *Nov 6, 1961Jun 23, 1964Kireta Andrew GCartridge dispenser
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3802600 *Mar 26, 1973Apr 9, 1974Shaw JProgrammed dispenser
US3814281 *Aug 20, 1973Jun 4, 1974Shaw JProgrammed article dispensing apparatus
US3847301 *Dec 19, 1973Nov 12, 1974Shaw JProgrammed article dispenser
US4872591 *Nov 19, 1987Oct 10, 1989Konopka Richard OMedication dispenser
US5221024 *Dec 18, 1992Jun 22, 1993Campbell Gordon MProgrammable medicine dispenser with manual override and color coded medicine canisters
US5848593 *Nov 26, 1996Dec 15, 1998Diebold, IncorporatedSystem for dispensing a kit of associated medical items
US6109774 *Jun 7, 1996Aug 29, 2000Pyxis CorporationDrawer operating system
US6682156Aug 23, 2002Jan 27, 2004Supply Point Systems Ltd.Apparatus for controlling access to a plurality of drawers
US20040193310 *Apr 1, 2004Sep 30, 2004Clark Claude L.Removing small items from a cartridge based restricted access dispenser system
US20150348352 *Dec 18, 2013Dec 3, 2015Wincor Nixdorf International GmbhCash box and device for handling notes of value with mechanical coding
Classifications
U.S. Classification221/5, 221/94
International ClassificationA61J7/00, A61J7/04
Cooperative ClassificationA61J7/04
European ClassificationA61J7/04