Special PP&P Buyer's Guide: Smart Pumps

February 2009 - Vol. 6 No. 2

Intelligent infusion systems, or smart pumps, continue to evolve and become more commonplace throughout hospitals, as the technology can reduce medication errors and adverse drug events and improve overall patient safety during IV infusions. The smart pump marketplace proved a hotbed of growth in 2008, and that trend is predicted to continue despite tightening budgets.

Facilities with smart pumps are now in the majority, with 52% of hospitals in 2008 reporting having intelligent infusion systems in place, a significant increase over the 43% reported in 2007, and planned adoptions are also on the rise. (see PP&P’s 2008 State of Pharmacy Automation, Aug. 2008)

Looking forward, 72% of hospitals currently without these systems, plan to implement them within the foreseeable future. The majority of that purchasing activity is expected to occur within the next two years.

Purchasing and implementing intelligent infusion systems is very much a pharmacy responsibility. The vast majority (77%) of hospitals report that pharmacy is active in smart pump purchasing decisions and an even greater majority (85%) of these facilities report that pharmacy is active in implementing them.

The sophistication of smart pump use is increasing as adoption becomes more widespread. Hospitals report continuing the trend of building their own drug libraries, with 62% of smart pump users having built their own drug libraries in 2008 and another 25% are using customized versions of the vendor-provided library. Facilities using wireless data transfer with their pumps jumped to 44% in 2008 and is predicted to reach 81% in the next five years.  While still a distinct minority, the number of facilities linking their smart pumps to their BCMA systems grew to 18% in 2008, up from 12% in 2007.

User satisfaction with smart pumps continues to be very impressive. An ove whelming number of smart pump users (96%) report that they are satisfied with their systems.

With this in mind, PP&P seeks to increase your awareness of the available smart pumps and brings you the following buyer’s guide, offering descriptions of some of the products in the market. You can use this buyer’s guide to research your options and learn about the numerous vendors offering smart pumps.

Smart Pumps Buyer’s Guide

Outlook ES
The Outlook ES Safety Infusion System is designed to help prevent IV medication errors. The Outlook ES features an improved color display that makes it easier for healthcare professionals to use. Along with improved display settings, the Outlook ES System features a 15-category drug library and the ability to continually display dosing limits. The system enables clinicians to improve patient safety while streamlining care by using its bar coding feature to allow designation of high-risk drugs only after two clinicians have scanned their identification badges. Ensuring two clinicians have reviewed the type and dosage of medication being transferred to a patient helps decrease the risk for medication administration error.

Curlin PainSmart IOD Pain Management System
The Curlin PainSmart IOD Pain Manage­ment System distributed by B. Braun Medical Inc. is a technologically ad­vanced ambulatory electronic infusion system equipped with Information On Demand (IOD) technology for PCA, PCEA and epidural therapies.  A rapid priming feature saves time and the CMS software supports easy downloading of Rx protocol from PDA to pump –allowing greater ease-of-use and timesavings. Its built-in safety features include programmable medication limits, and automatic verification and confirmation of dose changes before implementation – reducing the risk of programming errors and en­hancing patient safety.


Alaris System
The Alaris System is a flexible platform that enables multiple technologies to deliver safe guards at the point of care. The modular design of the Alaris System allows for standardization of every type of infusion on a common user interface, while respiratory monitoring and bar coding can be added as needed.  The Alaris Smart infusion technology provides broad protection for every type of infusion.
    -Allows you to standardize pump, syringe, and PCA infusions on one platform with a common         user interface.

    -Accelerates process improvement by enabling you to wirelessly download infusion and                 monitoring data for rapid analysis, while wirelessly uploading new drug and fluid parameters.

    -Sets safety standards in PCA therapy by automatically pausing infusions if patients fall below         clinically defined respiratory levels, which can be monitored via Alaris SpO2 and EtCO2 modules.

    -Offers a simple approach to bar code integration by allowing you to use the Alaris® Auto-ID         module, third party software systems or a combination of both.

    -Provides real-time information by displaying programming status, respiratory levels, alarm         information and your hospital’s clinical advisories. 

Medfusion 3500 Syringe Pump System with PharmGuard Medication Safety Software
The Medfusion 3500 Syringe Pump with PharmGuard Medication Safety Software is designed for children’s hospitals or NICU patients. The new version 5 software has many key enhancements including a flush mode for intermittent infusions, additional body weight modes, and the ability to download syringes. Its Quick Library feature is also ideal for delivering Propofol in the operation room setting. 

CADD-Solis Ambulatory Infusion System with Medication Safety Software
                                    The new CADD-Solis Ambulatory Infusion System with Medication Safety Software is a patient-centered, smart pain management infusion solution. Advancements help promote safety and standardization for all pain management therapies. The CADD-Solis system meets all industry-recognized standards for advanced error-reduction features in PCA pumps. The safety software is designed to help segment drug and concentration for clinical care areas, and deploy your best practice protocols into the pump. Hard and soft delivery limits with visual alerts enable patient-centered care. CADD-Solis system uses a wide variety of medication delivery sets, including Smiths Medical’s exclusive CADD medication cassette reservoirs, now available in 50-, 100- and new 250-mL size and color-coded for specific therapies with pre-filled cassette option available.  

Symbiq Infusion System

Compliance is key to patient safety and safety software compliance is assured through a number of key innovations in the Symbig infusion system. Hospira utilized human factors design practices as well as iterative usability testing by frontline clinician users to increase intuitive ease of use and reduce the risk of programming errors. The flexibility and expansive configurability of the Symbiq device, utilizing the integrated Hospira MedNet software, provides focused patient care. The Symbiq infuser supports quality assurance/improvement by providing accurate infusion data with connectivity that meets today’s needs, but is also designed to evolve with tomorrow’s system changes and requirements. 


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