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Pharmacy Automation Devices Market Size, Share, Growth & COVID-19 Impact Analysis, By Product (Automated Medication Dispensing Systems [Robotic Dispensing Systems, and Automated Dispensing Cabinets (ADC’s)], Automated Packaging Systems, and Others), By Distribution Model (Centralized and Decentralized), By End User (Hospital Pharmacies, Retail Pharmacies, and Others), and Regional Forecast, 2023-2030

Last Updated: May 06, 2024 | Format: PDF | Report ID: FBI106938



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The pharmacy automation devices market size was valued at USD 2.56 billion in 2022 and is projected to grow from USD 2.83 billion in 2023 to USD 5.84 billion by 2030, exhibiting a CAGR of 10.9% during 2023-2030. North America dominated the global market with a share of 58.59% in 2022.

Pharmacy automation devices are electronic systems used for distributing, sorting, packaging, and counting prescription medications across centralized dispensing pharmacies and inpatient care units in health settings. These systems increase the efficiency of pharmacies, standardize the workflow, help to maintain medication inventory, stocks, and improve patient adherence.

Certain elements such as the complexity of handling large volumes of prescription medicines among the rising number of patients, and the potential hazards caused by manual dispensing errors, have led to the demand of automated systems. Thus, hospital pharmacy departments across health settings emphasize optimizing drug preparation, dispensing, and distribution systems and developing comprehensive policies and procedures that provide safer distribution of all medications and related supplies to inpatients and outpatients. Moreover, the potential advantages of adopting these systems, such as high speed, accuracy, real-time inventory tracking, data confidentiality, data protection, and patient adherence in the drug dispensing systems, further boost the market growth.

  • In January 2022, according to the data published in the American Journal of Health-System Pharmacy, the use of automated dispensing cabinets (ADCs) is increasing in healthcare settings, with 93.0% of hospitals using ADCs in their medication-use systems in which 70.2% of hospitals using ADCs as a primary method of dose distribution.

Thus, the rising adoption of these systems across acute care settings in hospital and retail pharmacies and technological advancements in automation solutions will boost market growth.


Decline in Pharmacy Automation Device Sales Amid Pandemic Hindered Market Growth

The market witnessed a negative impact in 2020. During the COVID-19 pandemic, hospitals, pharmacies, and other facilities faced challenges with manual drug prescribing and dispensing among hospitalized patients, owing to rising chances of infection and contamination of the COVID-19 virus. Moreover, a decline in patients visiting health settings, such as hospitals and outpatient & retail pharmacies for treatment, further impacted market growth.

Moreover, supply chain disruptions and country lockdowns imposed by several governments decreased the demand for pharmacy devices in pharmacies globally. Moreover, several industry players witnessed limited demand for the implementation of pharmacy-automated devices across health settings.

  • According to the Omnicell Inc. annual report 2020, the company's pharmacy automated product sales witnessed a decline of 3.6% in 2020 compared to 2019.

However, owing to revoking pandemic restrictions in 2021, the hospitals and retail pharmacies emphasized automating the routine distribution workflow of medicines among patients to maintain social distancing, enroute safe administration, and limit the number of medical errors. Moreover, rising awareness of automated pharmacy systems among health facilities led to the introduction of these devices by key players, further propelling market growth in 2021.

  • In October 2021, Palex Medical, S.A. introduced the new generation of the Omnicell Medimat robot for dispensing medicines to outpatients.

Thus, post-pandemic, the increased medication prescriptions among patients and rising awareness of pharmacy automation solutions among health facilities globally augmented market growth in 2021.


Rising Demand for Robotics Dispensing Devices Across Hospital and Retail Pharmacies to Aid Market growth

The robotic dispensing system (RDS) plays a crucial role by automatically storing, counting, and dispensing various medication pills to enable centralized pharmacies to fulfill high-volume prescriptions safely and efficiently. Owing to the high accuracy and efficiency of the robotic system, the demand is increasing across acute care settings for drug barcoding, dispensing, and intravenous compounding. Similarly, the rising emphasis of leading industry players in launching technologically advanced robotic dispensing systems across health settings augments the automation devices in the pharmacy market growth.

  • According to an article published by NCBI, in March 2023, robotic dispensing systems have become a general solution for medication errors occurring during the dispensing process. These devices fill over 90,000 patient prescriptions per day in central pharmacy systems.

Moreover, several pharmacy settings across outpatient and institutional settings are now emphasizing automating the medication dispensing system to limit the rising incidence of medical errors and increased demand for specialty drug dispensing that requires more complicated techniques than traditional prescription drugs.

  • In March 2022, the Wirral Hospitals NHS Trust reported a 50.0% reduction in medication dispensing errors within four months after implementing a pharmacy robot.

  • According to the national survey by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) in 2020, 74.5% of hospitals use robots for drug dispensing.

Thus, high potential advantages of robotic systems, such as improved workflow and error-free medication dispensing, coupled with high demand across hospital pharmacies in developed countries, further aid market growth.

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Increasing Medication Dispensing Errors Across Pharmacies to Fuel the Demand for Automated Devices

Medication dispensing error is an inconsistency between drugs prescribed and dispensed in the pharmacy settings. The increasing number of people adopting self-treatment, the availability of expansive prescription drugs, and the growing number of chronic diseases globally, and increase the consumption of medicines, further raising the chances of medication dispensing errors. The rising incidence of these errors by the health workforce raises the financial burden and significant fatal outcomes among patients across healthcare organizations.

  • In 2022, the World Health Organization (WHO) reported that the European region encounters 1.6% to 2.1% of medication errors in drug dispensing across healthcare facilities. As per similar estimates, 237.0 million medication errors occur annually in the U.K., of which 66.0 million are potentially clinically significant.

  • According to an article published by Asian Robotics Review LLC in 2021, the U.S. encounters around 51.5 million dispensing errors, accounting for 0.1 million deaths annually.

Thus, growing concerns over preventing medication dispensing errors and the lack of skilled clinical pharmacists and nurses in patient care management increase the demand for these devices in retail and hospital pharmacies. Similarly, increasing initiatives by inpatient and outpatient pharmacies to control costs associated with drug distribution and safe dispensing among patients and minimize medical errors will further boost the demand for these devices and market growth.

  • The Journal of Medical Systems published a research study in November 2022 at the ICUs of National Cheng Kung University Hospital (NCKUH) in Taiwan. After the adoption of ADCs in the ICUs, the rate of errors reduced from 3.87 to 0 per 100,000 dispensations, respectively.

Therefore, the rising incidence of medical dispensing errors across pharmacy settings and the demand for safe medication dispensing among patients are key factors anticipated to drive market growth.


High Capital Investments to Install Pharmacy Automation Devices to Hamper Market Growth

Despite the potential advantages of these systems, many professionals hesitate to adopt such devices due to the high capital investment in the installation compared to manual setups. Additionally, the concerns over return on investment (ROI) related to these devices limit its adoption by hospitals and pharmacies.

  • As per ScreenVend estimates in January 2021, a typical investment for a robot is between USD 84,210.0 and USD 189,473.6, depending on the size and dispensing capability of the robot.

  • As per CARE DIRECT, LLC estimates, an automated dispensing cabinet costs between USD 30,000 to USD 100,000 for a single unit over a 5-year window. Moreover, these complex devices can consume months for optimal utilization.

Along with installation, the maintenance cost associated with pharmacy automation devices is high. These devices use advanced software to regulate the routine workflow of the pharmacy. Some software requires regular updates for better performance, which in turn increases the expenditure on the devices.

  • According to an article published by Pharmacy Software in March 2022, the average cost of installing a pharmacy automation software system for a new pharmacy can range from USD 15,000 to USD 30,000. Moreover, costs associated with replacing existing software can be up to USD 10,000 to USD 30,000.

Furthermore, pharmacy automation constantly needs human intervention and the staff members need extensive training to handle pharmacy automation devices. Lack of proper training and education among health professionals may result in incorrect programming of the machines, ultimately dispensing the wrong medication or dose.

Thus, a surge in challenges of installing these devices and the need for constant maintenance and software upgradation limit the adoption of pharmacy automation devices across health settings, further hampering market growth.


By Product Analysis

Rising Adoption of Automated Dispensing Systems across Hospital Pharmacies Augmented Automated Dispensing Systems Segment Growth

Based on product, the pharmacy automation devices market is segmented into automated medication dispensing systems, automated packaging systems, and others.

The automated medication dispensing systems segment accounted for the highest market share in 2022. The higher share was attributed to the rise in the adoption of automated dispensing cabinets for drug dispensing across inpatient and outpatient pharmacies. Moreover, high potential advantages of these systems, such as high accuracy and safe dispensing of medications across pharmacy settings, propels the segment growth.

  • According to an article published by the Journal of Medical Systems in April 2023, ADCs dispense the most commonly prescribed medications, accounting for approximately 80.0% of all dispensing volume.

Similarly, due to high demand, an increase in the introduction of technologically advanced devices by key manufacturers, such as robotic dispensing systems and unit dose systems, will further drive segment growth.

On the other hand, the automated packaging systems segment is expected to witness a moderate CAGR during the forecast period. The growth was due to the rising errors in manual packaging and labeling for medication management in pharmacy settings. Also, increasing retail and outpatient pharmacies' emphasis on automating the regular medication workflow will further propel the segment growth.

  • According to data revealed by Pharmaceutical Processing World, an estimated 50.0% of all pharmaceutical device recalls come down to errors in the labeling or packaging process in pharmacies worldwide.

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By Distribution Model Analysis

High Potential Advantages of Decentralized Distribution Model to Drive Decentralized Segment Growth

By distribution model, the market is segmented into centralized and decentralized.

The decentralized segment held the dominant share and is anticipated to grow at the highest CAGR during the forecast period. The dominant share in 2022 is attributed to the rising adoption of satellite pharmacies and ADCs across retail pharmacies for drug prescription and dispensing among patients. Moreover, the high potential advantages of the decentralized model, such as patient safety, care efficiency, and cost-effectiveness compared to the centralized model, will further augment the market growth.

  • According to study estimates published by Carstens, Inc., in June 2021, adopting the decentralized model across hospitals can save about USD 12,000 per year on medication dispensing.

On the contrary, the centralized segment is expected to grow at a moderate CAGR during 2023-2030. The growth was attributed to the high focus on hospitals and retail pharmacies over traditional manual unit dose systems across developing economies such as China and India.

By End User Analysis

Increasing Number of Automated Retail Pharmacies Globally to Boost Hospital Pharmacies Segment Growth

Based on end user, the market is segmented into hospital pharmacies, retail pharmacies, and others.

The hospital pharmacies segment held the highest market share in 2022, owing to the rising emphasis of hospitals on automating the pharmacy workflow to minimize the rising incidence of medication errors among patients. Moreover, the rising number of routine drug prescriptions and dispensing across hospital pharmacies owing to the high number of patient hospitalizations will further augment the segment growth.

  • Omnicell Inc. estimated that in 2022, about 50.0% of U.S. hospitals will adopt its pharmacy automation systems.

Similarly, the retail pharmacies segment is expected to grow at the highest CAGR owing to a rising number of retail pharmacies with a need for advanced robotic and workflow management devices in prescription filling and inventory management.

  • In January 2023, Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc., a global innovator in retail pharmacy, launched nine retail micro-fulfillment centers across the U.S. The micro-fulfillment centers are facilitated with robots for prescription filling and can fill 300 prescriptions per hour.


North America Pharmacy Automation Devices Market Size, 2022 (USD Billion)

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The North American region accounted for the largest market share of USD 1.50 billion in 2022. The growth of pharmacy automation devices market in North America was attributed to rising new technologically advanced device launches and the extensive presence of major players in the market. Moreover, the rising adoption of robotic dispensing systems across retail pharmacies will further benefit regional growth.

  • In December 2022, Baxter introduced ExactaMix Pro, a next-generation automated nutrition compounder certified by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) with a recognized UL 2900-2-1 cybersecurity standard.

Europe accounted for a considerable market share in 2022. The market growth in the region was attributed to the rising adoption of automated systems across outpatient and retail pharmacies due to the rise in the incidence of medical errors among patients and the increasing number of geriatric population with chronic diseases. Moreover, rising awareness of healthcare robotic automation across developed countries will further augment regional growth.

  • In June 2021, the National Health Service (NHS) revealed that around 237.0 million prescription errors are prevalent each year in England.

  • In October 2021, Satasairaala Hospital Pharmacy, Finland, installed NewIcon’s IV ICON Twins compounding system to expand its production capacity.

The market in Asia Pacific is expected to grow at the highest CAGR during the forecast period. An increasing number of retail and hospital pharmacies in the Asia Pacific region and rising demand for prescription drugs among patients will aid the increasing demand for pharmacy automation devices. Moreover, the rising focus of major players to extend their regional distribution network will further propel regional growth during the forecast period.

  • According to statistics published by Industry Advisors in May 2021, there were 0.9 million retail pharmacy stores in India.

Similarly, the Middle East & Africa, and Latin America region are expected to grow at a considerable CAGR during 2023-2030, owing to rising infrastructure developments and technological advancements in operational workflow across health settings.


Rising Strategic Acquisitions and Product launches By Key Players to Propel Market Growth

The market is highly competitive and is primarily dominated by a few manufacturers, such as Omnicell Inc., BD, Capsa Healthcare, and Yuyama Co., Ltd. These major players are emphasizing strategic initiatives, such as collaborations, acquisitions, and mergers, to expand their existing portfolio in the market, further propelling their company share.

  • In July 2022, BD acquired Parata Systems, LLC, which provides innovative pharmacy automation systems and solutions. The Parata Systems product portfolio includes vending machine-like robots for dispensing, capping, and sorting pills and software programs for pharmacy automation devices.

  • In August 2021, Capsa Healthcare acquired Specialty Carts Inc. to expand LTC medication management capabilities. The acquisition will continue Capsa’s ability to provide a highly diverse product offering in pharmacy automation.

Moreover, other emerging players in the market include RxSafe LLC., NewIcon, and ScriptPro LLC., and others. These players are focusing on R&D for new product launches to increase the accessibility of their pharmacy automation devices across the globe. Also, market players are focusing on technological advancements and improving the digital capabilities of automated devices to increase their demand in hospital and retail pharmacies. These elements will propel their global pharmacy automation devices market share.

  • In May 2021, NewIcon signed a distribution agreement with MEDWISE, a healthcare software development company in Sweden. MEDWISE focuses on the sales, marketing, and maintenance activities of NewIcon’s pharmacy automation systems in Sweden, especially eMED ICON automated dispensing cabinets.

Thus, numerous collaborations and R&D activities within the industry players to launch new and advanced products globally are expected to drive the pharmacy automation devices market growth during the projected period.



  • December 2022 - Swisslog Healthcare showcased medication management solutions at the ASHP Midyear Clinical Meeting & Exhibition. The company exhibited operational technologies such as BoxPicker, PillPick, and AutoPack.

  • February 2022 - RxSafe, LLC., became a sponsor for Flip the Pharmacy, a 5-year pharmacy transformation program impacting thousands of community-based pharmacies.

  • January 2022 - Omnicell, Inc. acquired U.K.-based Hub and Spoke Innovations Limited to complement its total solution technology portfolio for retail pharmacies in the U.K. to help pharmacies improve workflows and offer patients 24/7 access to their medications.

  • August 2021 - Capsa Healthcare acquired Specialty Carts Inc. to expand LTC medication management capabilities. The acquisition will continue Capsa’s ability to provide a highly diverse product offering with four lines of medication carts to suit extended care.

  • March 2021 - BD acquired GSL Solutions Inc. GSL’s products include standalone cabinets that provide secure storage for prescriptions and secured cabinets for controlled substances.


An Infographic Representation of Pharmacy Automation Devices Market

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The pharmacy automation devices market report provides detailed market analysis and focuses on crucial aspects such as leading players, product types, and major indications of products. Additionally, it offers insights into market trends, key industry developments such as mergers, partnerships, & acquisitions, and the impact of COVID-19 on the market. In addition to the factors mentioned above, the report includes the factors that have contributed to the market's growth in recent years with a regional analysis of different segments.

Report Scope & Segmentation



Study Period


Base Year


Estimated Year


Forecast Period


Historical Period



Value (USD billion)

Growth Rate  

CAGR of 10.9% from 2023-2030


By Product

  • Automated Medication dispensing system

    • Robotic automated dispensing system

    • Automated dispensing cabinets

  • Automated Packaging Systems

  • Others

By Distribution Model

  • Centralized

  • Decentralized

By End User

  • Hospital Pharmacies

  • Retail Pharmacies

  • Others

By Region

  • North America (By Product, By Distribution Model, By End User, and By Country)

    • U.S.

    • Canada

  • Europe (By Product, By Distribution Model, By End User, and By Country/Sub-region)

    • U.K.

    • Germany

    • France

    • Italy

    • Spain

    • Rest of Europe

  • Asia Pacific (By Product, By Distribution Model, By End User, and By Country/Sub-region)

    • China

    • Japan

    • India

    • Australia

    • Southeast Asia

    • Rest of Asia Pacific

  • Latin America (By Product, By Distribution Model, By End User, and By Country/Sub-region)

    • Brazil

    • Mexico

    • Rest of Latin America

  • Middle East & Africa (By Product, By Distribution Model, By End User, and By Country/Sub-region)

    • GCC

    • South Africa

    • Rest of Middle East & Africa

Frequently Asked Questions

Fortune Business Insights says that the global market size was USD 2.56 billion in 2022 and is projected to reach USD 5.84 billion by 2030.

Registering a CAGR of 10.9%, the market will exhibit steady growth in the forecast period (2023-2030).

The automated dispensing systems segment led the market in 2022.

The rising prevalence of medical errors in pharmacies and the increasing product launches by industry players across the globe are the key factors driving the market growth.

Omnicell Inc., BD, and Yuyama Ltd. are major players in the global market.

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