Partner Facilities Program
Getting to know you is critical to innovating with value. Through our “Partner Facilities” program, Hospira brings the “real world” into our product development, sending cross-functional teams of subject-matter experts into hospitals and clinics to learn for themselves the day-to-day challenges that you face.
“Everything matters,” said Ami Treves Global Marketing Director, Hospira. “We take into consideration how and where clinicians deliver medication and the pain points they encounter. We work with the clinical users — the people who handle the vials, those who prepare the drugs for administration and those who administer the drugs to the patients.”
Our cross-functional teams spend time at our partner facilities, observing pharmacists and nurses in action. We follow this exercise with brainstorming sessions where our team reviews and discusses their observations with our partners. The unfiltered information helps our scientists, engineers and other team members see your problems from a new perspective. “Often, they see things that the healthcare providers themselves can’t express, and come up with ideas for potential improvements” added Treves.
“When we make an improvement, we go back to the clinicians with a prototype. We test every iteration in their hands, in the true setting, to see if it fits in the dispensing cabinet or fits under the hood.” said Treves. “The clinicians really appreciate that we are listening to them and helping them serve their patients better.” Treves added that even though the clinicians are very busy, they participate because they want to influence how products they use on a daily basis are improved.
The iSecure™ prefilled syringe is one example of how clinician concerns have influenced innovations in medication delivery. We worked with our partners to understand the issues they were having with their current syringe system, the Carpuject™. In use since after World War II, the Carpuject system includes a broad portfolio of drugs that are dispensed using easy-loading drug cartridges and a reusable holder. We learned that in the clinician’s busy environment, there is an issue with reusable holders being misplaced.
“All too often the Carpuject holder is left at the nursing station or can’t be found — the nurses end up wasting valuable time searching for the holder or for an alternative way to administer the drug” noted Treves. He added that listening to customer accounts of this issue led to the development of the iSecure™ prefilled syringe. Unlike the Carpuject system, the iSecure’s innovative all-in-one design has the plunger rod mounted to the syringe body. With this design the clinician doesn’t have to worry about not having the device necessary to deliver the medication. An additional benefit to iSecure includes two layers of tamper evident packaging to help minimize drug diversion.
The recent introduction of a smaller presentation of hydromorphone is another example of how Hospira’s development teams listen to the input collected from our users.
“The smallest presentation of hydromorphone on the market was 1 mg. During conversations with pharmacists and anesthesiologists, it became apparent that more and more were prescribing 0.5 mg and that they had many concerns using the 1 mg presentation for these prescriptions,” said Treves. “In response, we recently added 0.5 mg hydromorphone in an iSecure syringe. In addition to reducing the potential for medication administration errors, this new presentation helps reduce waste.”
When innovation and customer-centricity go hand-in-hand, the impact can be dramatic or it can result in simple improvements in your day-to-day working lives. Everything from workflow efficiency to methods for helping prevent medication errors could be examined in the Partner Facilities program — a program that starts when we ask “How can I help you?”