Why a seemingly simple process like infusion is so complex

I’ve spent a lot of time in hospitals and clinics all over the world in the past few years. A trend I’ve seen just about everywhere is infusion bags hung via gravity, delivering hydration therapy or medication, and nurses fiddling with roller clamps. Even in the most high tech facilities with complex infusion systems, nurses in recovery rooms, doing gastroenterology procedures or in outpatient infusion settings have many patients receiving fluids via gravity IV.

The uphill battle these nurses face is managing the incredibly dynamic system of gravity infusion while working to keep their patients on schedule for treatments and ensure fluids are administered reliably and accurately, all while managing their patient load.

One restless infusion patient can inadvertently change the pressure of their infusion just by moving around. That in turn can alter the infusion rate so their appointment doesn’t complete on time -- causing a cascade throughout the day of scheduling headaches.

Even in perfect conditions, during any gravity IV treatment, the rate changes over time, and without the right tools, a 45 minute infusion can stretch into an hour or more. Venous pressure, patient movement, tubing creep -- each of these factors and more can change an infusion rate. However, the expense and complexity of a infusion pump isn’t always the best approach. Whether it’s infiltration risk or an ambulatory setting, we need a better approach to help nurses take control of gravity infusion.

Nurses work hard, and they deserve sensible and simple tools that empower them to reduce the uncertainties of gravity infusion. Make gravity intravenous therapy more predictable, and you decrease patient risk while staying on track with schedules. Adding infusion monitoring with a product like DripAssist means nurses finally have an infusion technology that is fast to set up, reliable, and guarantees healthcare safety and savings.

See our White Paper 'Managing the Dynamic Systems of Gravity Infusion' here.

Beth Kolko

Co-founder & CEO