Technology in the nursing home

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Michael Defrancesco
Michael Defrancesco
For many years medical device companies would specifically target hospitals when launching new products. Hospitals would have the distinct advantage of being on the cutting edge of developing technologies.  Not so for the long-term care providers. Nursing homes traditionally were never considered part of these “test markets” and as a result, were left behind as it relates to technology of any form. 

Take for instance, the method for crushing solid medication – a critical area that affects both nurses as well as patients. Over the years the technology has advanced from one “manual” process to another.  Not too long ago, the mortar and pestle were the mechanism of choice to crush pills; and over the years one manual process replaced another; today we are left with, YES, another manual process. So much for technology advancements in the nursing home.

The average facility has to crush pills for around 30% of its residents. Nursing staff need to administer a med pass 2-3 times per day; this is a lot of pills being “manually” crushed.

Today, bags are used to hold the pills while the nurse moves a lever up and down to “crush” the pill.  Many things happen during this tedious process:

  • When finished; the nurse must transfer the crushed medication into a mixing/med cup
  • Some medication is left behind in the bag
  • Depending on how well the staff uses the “manual” process; the results vary from nurse to nurse and from day to day.
  • Tubes clog when medication is not fully crushed

The result is simply common sense; manual process provides:

  • NO consistency of dosing
  • NO consistency of powder produced
  • Loss of medication
  • Sore wrists and elbows after repeated manual crushing

THE GOOD NEWS

First Wave Products brings real technology to the nursing home. The First Crush automated pill crusher was developed to eliminate the issues nurses face with the manual process. Here are the benefits:

  • Easy to use
  • Consistent results no matter who is using the unit
  • Consistent powder produced 
  • No medication left behind in a bag
  • Crush and Grind vs. just  smashing
  • Crush/grind, mix, and serve from the same cup
  • Reduces the risk of clogging tubes
  • No manual labor/ NO sore wrists or elbows

Nurses across the board will confess to the daily struggle of providing accurate med pass to patients.  First Crush is the “first step” in offering a time-saving, cost-effective solution for caregivers in every area of medical care.

Michael Defrancesco is president of First Wave Products, creators of First Crush and whose parent company, First Wave Technologies, Inc., works with leading research institutions and universities to develop next generation medical technologies. For more information, call 877-784-0269 or email at service@firstwaveproducts.com

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