Making Surgery Safer (High-Tech Gauze?)

Posted On December 4, 2008 | by AllenCaron

Had an interesting meeting yesterday with the CEO of a recently minted public company called SurgiCount (www.surgicountmedical.com).  Seems they have a novel solution to what is still a nagging safety problem in the surgical suite.  According to CEO Bill Adams, surgical sponges or other “supplies” are accidentally left behind inside the patient at a rate of about one incidence for every 1,500 abdominal procedures.  This translates to about two times a day in the US.  The problem is that these gauze pads are hard to find after used and bloody and, they are tracked via a manual hand count.

SurgiCount Safety Sponge

SurgiCount Safety Sponge

SurgiCount has an automated counting system that employs bar coding the individual sponges and tracking those devices as they are used and disposed.  Hospitals seem to be warming to the system as leading academic institutions, community hospitals and VA facilities have all come on board.  Adams thinks they can grow sales quickly as payors and administrators grasp the economics of the purchase vs. the liability of these errors.

More later……

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