Velano Vascular has been working with several health systems on pilot programs and clinical studies of its needle-free blood draw device. Now, Salt Lake City’s Intermountain Healthcare is the first to adopt the technology across its 22 hospitals, eliminating needle sticks from blood collection.
The PIVO device takes advantage of equipment that most hospital in-patients already have—a peripheral intravenous (IV) catheter. The single-use, disposable PIVO attaches to the IV line and advances a small, flexible catheter through it to collect blood samples. This spares the patient from repeated needle sticks for routine blood draws.
“Blood draws are critical, common elements in modern medicine, but they cause an unnecessary amount of anxiety, pain and risk due to the use of century-old technology and practice,” said Kim Henrichsen, Intermountain senior vice president and chief nursing executive, in a statement. “We are thrilled to offer a new standard of care that, over time, will help obviate the need for needles used for hospital blood collection.”
While the benefits to the patient are obvious, the PIVO technology minimizes practitioners’ exposure to needles and could lead to the standardization of blood collection across a hospital, health system—such as Intermountain—and beyond.
The original PIVO scored FDA clearance in 2015 and its follow-up got the FDA nod in February this year. The next-generation device was designed for easier use and high-volume manufacturing.
"Feedback from hundreds of practitioners already using our technology reinforced PIVO's ability to enhance the blood draw experience for patients and clinical staff, and helped us to develop a next generation product better suited for widespread adoption,” said Velano CEO Eric Stone at the time.
Another player working on needle-free blood draws is Seventh Sense Biosystems, which got its “push-button” blood collection device through the FDA earlier this year. The TAP device uses an array of microneedles and vacuum pressure to draw blood in a “virtually painless” way. The device was approved to draw blood for the measurement of HbA1c levels in people with diabetes and prediabetes, but the company plans to add tests for more conditions to the device.