AmerisourceBergen Helps Hospitals and Manufacturers Respond to New FDA Barcode Regulations with Broadest Array of Solutions

March 11, 2004

VALLEY FORGE, Pa., Mar 11, 2004 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Hospital Patient Safety and Efficiency to Be Improved With Products and Services

AmerisourceBergen Corporation (NYSE:ABC), one of the largest pharmaceutical services companies in the U.S., today said it has the broadest array of solutions to help pharmaceutical manufacturers and hospitals respond to the Food and Drug Administration's new barcode regulations. The recently announced regulations require, within the next two years, supermarket-like barcodes on most pharmaceuticals and blood products used in hospitals.

"We are pleased that the FDA has taken this important step towards significantly improving patient medication safety," said Kurt Hilzinger, President and Chief Operating Officer of AmerisourceBergen. "We are committed to utilizing our broad array of scalable and fully integrated barcode-enabled products and services to help both manufacturers and healthcare providers comply with the new rule and improve the quality of patient care delivered in America."

AmerisourceBergen is a leader in packaging pharmaceuticals directly for manufacturers, and also repackaging products into unit dose formats for providers, using barcodes at every step of the process to enhance product tracking capabilities. "With our experience in fulfilling barcoded packaging needs for both manufacturers and end users, we believe AmerisourceBergen is uniquely positioned to help our manufacturer customers comply with the FDA's new rule and enhance our provider customers' patient safety efforts," said Ed Hancock, President, AmerisourceBergen Packaging Group.

In order to take advantage of the full potential of barcoded pharmaceuticals, hospitals need the best barcode-enabled technology available to track medications from the moment they arrive at the loading dock to the moment they are administered to the patient. "AmerisourceBergen offers customers an open architecture approach to improving patient safety. Using both a customer's existing technology investments as well as our own proprietary technology, we believe we can offer a uniquely comprehensive and cost effective solution that measurably improves patient safety," said Rusty Lewis, President, AmerisourceBergen Technology Group.

Drawing from the strengths of its own AutoMed pharmacy automation technology, MedSelect barcode-enabled cabinet storage solutions, and Bridge Medical bedside scanning capabilities, AmerisourceBergen uses its Choice Systems integrators to seamlessly create a customer-centered patient safety solution. AutoMed's automation technology streamlines pharmacy operations by improving inventory management and automating the dispensing process. AutoMed systems are used today to package and barcode pharmaceuticals in unit dose format to enhance tracking and reduce manual picking, thereby reducing the potential for errors. MedSelect cabinets store pharmaceutical and medical products by barcode and track cabinet inventory, usage by patient, usage by provider, and other critical data. Bridge Medical's barcode point-of-care verification system automates the "Five Rights" checking process, ensuring that the right patient is receiving the right drug at the right time in the right dose via the right route.

AmerisourceBergen's technology and expertise combine to offer our customers the most flexible, most comprehensive approach to using barcode technology to improve patient safety in the industry.

About AmerisourceBergen

AmerisourceBergen (NYSE:ABC) is the largest pharmaceutical services company in the United States dedicated solely to the pharmaceutical supply chain. It is the leading distributor of pharmaceutical products and services to the hospital market, physician's offices, alternate care and mail order facilities, and independent and chain pharmacies. The Company is also a leader in the long term care pharmacy marketplace, the workers' compensation fulfillment business and contract packaging for manufacturers. With more than $45 billion in annualized operating revenue, AmerisourceBergen is headquartered in Valley Forge, PA, and employs more than 14,000 people. AmerisourceBergen is ranked #24 on the Fortune 500 list and was ranked #6 in the 2003 Business Week 50, a list of the 50 best performing companies in the S & P 500. For more information, go to


This news release may contain certain "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. These statements are based on management's current expectations and are subject to uncertainty and changes in circumstances. Actual results may vary materially from the expectations contained in the forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements may include statements addressing future financial and operating results of AmerisourceBergen and the benefits and other aspects of the 2001 merger between AmeriSource Health Corporation and Bergen Brunswig Corporation.

The following factors, among others, could cause actual results to differ materially from those described in any forward-looking statements: competitive pressures; the loss of one or more key customer relationships; customer insolvencies; changes in customer mix; changes in pharmaceutical manufacturers' pricing and distribution policies; regulatory changes; changes in U.S. government policies; failure to integrate the businesses of AmeriSource and Bergen Brunswig successfully; failure to obtain and retain expected synergies from the merger of AmeriSource and Bergen Brunswig; and other economic, business, competitive, regulatory and/or operational factors affecting the business of AmerisourceBergen generally.

More detailed information about these factors is set forth in AmerisourceBergen's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its Annual Report on Form 10-K for fiscal 2003.

AmerisourceBergen is under no obligation to (and expressly disclaims any such obligation to) update or alter any forward looking statements whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

SOURCE: AmerisourceBergen Corporation

AmerisourceBergen Corporation, Valley Forge
Barbara Brungess, 610-727-7199
Customize your Business Wire news & multimedia to match your needs.
Get breaking news from companies and organizations worldwide.
Logon for FREE today at