23 July 2013
University researcher's antibiotic device to improve home healthcare
A mobile antibiotic device co-invented by a University of Newcastle researcher is set to revolutionise patient home healthcare and free up hospital beds, thanks to a Medical Device Fund (MDF) grant worth $215,000 from the NSW Government.
The announcement was made by the Minister for Medical Research, the Hon Jillian Skinner MP, at the Cochlear Building in Sydney.
A conversation 10 years ago between Professor Paul Dastoor from the University of Newcastle and Ken Logan from medical device maker MobiLIFE led to a back-of-napkin concept design that, with the assistance of the University's commercial arm Newcastle Innovation, today sees the MobiDRIP in use in six hospitals across NSW and Queensland.
"The MobiDRIP allows patients requiring an intravenous drip to recover in the comfort of their own homes; freeing up hospital beds and dramatically lowering healthcare costs," said Professor Dastoor.
"The simplicity of the MobiDRIP design means it doesn't require electrical power, it is lightweight and easy to operate."
"We see this product being used not only in hospitals and homes, but in ambulances, the military and even veterinary clinics."
The MobiDRIP delivers a predetermined infusion flow rate by applying controlled pressure to a standard bag of IV fluid, which is wrapped in a cuff that inflates via a disposable compressed gas cannister. Clinical trials have shown that it is more accurate at supplying antibiotics than computer-based pumps.
The MDF grant will be used to commercialise distribution of the MobiDRIP.
University of Newcastle Acting Pro Vice-Chancellor Research, Professor Deborah Hodgson, said the MobiDRIP was a great example of how the University's research was being turned into commercially viable products that could have global benefits.
"We're incredibly proud of Professor Dastoor's achievement in designing this revolutionary device that will provide more treatment options and improve clinical practice globally," said Professor Hodgson.
"One of the greatest challenges facing healthcare systems is the rising cost of treatment and therapies. The long-term opportunity for MobiDRIP lies in the huge international market for home healthcare, which in the USA alone is more than one billion dollars annually.
"The success of the product so far is the result of a 10-year collaborative effort between the University researchers, MobiLIFE, Newcastle Innovation and other industry partners and all should be congratulated on developing a product that will help so many people."
The MDF is funded by the NSW Government through the NSW Ministry of Health and aims to promote innovative medical devices and technology within NSW.
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