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Tuesday, Jan 30, 2024

Ballad Health partners with 410 Medical for rapid fluid delivery

Ballad Health and the Ballad Health Innovation Center are partnering with 410 Medical, Inc. to use its LifeFlow device, a rapid fluid delivery mechanism that reduces the time needed to revive a patient in need of blood or fluids.

Designed to help overcome common barriers to fluid delivery, LifeFlow is an easy-to-use, portable device that rapidly and efficiently delivers fluids to patients with critical conditions such as sepsis, shock, trauma, cardiac arrest and severe hemorrhage. LifeFlow can deliver 1 liter of fluid or two units of blood in less than four minutes, while traditional methods can take three to 10 times longer.

Ballad Health Innovation Center’s partnership with Durham, North Carolina-based 410 Medical, Inc. includes a pilot project where Ballad Health started using the LifeFlow device at Niswonger Children’s Hospital to treat pediatric patients. Since then, the pilot project has expanded to four more facilities: Johnson City Medical Center, Bristol Regional Medical Center, Holston Valley Medical Center and Indian Path Community Hospital. These locations are currently using it for fluid administration to treat patients of all ages, utilizing crystalloid fluids with a planned expansion to include blood administration in the near future.

From the outset, LifeFlow generated success stories throughout Ballad Health. Early in the pilot, a care team reported a patient was lethargic, with critically low blood pressure and heart rate. The physician requested an ICU bed transfer and called for rapid response care team for assessment. The medical emergency team nurse rapidly delivered fluids via the LifeFlow device, and the nurse shared that the patient immediately became alert and oriented with a rapid improvement in vitals. After the physician reassessed the patient, no transfer to the ICU was needed.

Dr. Morgan May, chief nursing officer for Ballad Health’s Southern Region, described the LifeFlow device as a gamechanger because of its ease of use, cost-effectiveness and sustainability.

“Early and aggressive fluid therapy is critical when treating life-threatening illnesses, but traditional methods of infusion can be slow, cumbersome and complex to administer,” May said. “The LifeFlow device is designed to overcome the challenges associated with normal infusers, and ultimately, it’s a valuable tool to help us improve the clinical quality of care we deliver to patients.”

As a portable device, LifeFlow is easier to set up and operate compared to typical infusers and other fluid delivery devices. This reduces the amount of technical manpower needed for preparation and operation.

Seth Brown, MD, chief medical officer for the Ballad Health Niswonger Children’s Network, became interested in LifeFlow while attending an EMS education event and offered to support a pilot test of the device at Ballad Health.

“So far, we’ve seen tremendous success using LifeFlow, especially with our sepsis patients,” Dr. Brown said. “It’s notable how fast this device is able to deliver fluids compared to traditional infusers, and it’s truly made a difference for our patients.”

Approved by the Food and Drug Administration in 2016, LifeFlow is routinely used in hospitals and EMS agencies across the country. Compared to standard methods, use of LifeFlow has been shown to result in a decrease in the average length of stay for patients in the intensive care unit. Its use has also been shown to reduce overall hospital expenses compared to using traditional infusion methods, according to a 2018 study.

Based on its success, 410 Medical, Inc. is broadening LifeFlow’s market release to an even larger group of hospitals nationwide. Since LifeFlow is smaller and easier to use, it’s better suited economically for use at rural and community hospitals where less manpower is needed to administer the LifeFlow device, compared to its more complex counterparts. This is particularly crucial in cases like sepsis, which is the leading cause of death in hospitals. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), at least 1.7 million adults in the United States develop sepsis annually, and nearly 270,000 die as a result.

“Fluid delivery is the lifeline in the battle against sepsis, where every drop of timely intervention can make a life-saving difference,” said Amit Vashist, MD, Ballad Health’s chief clinical officer.

“Whether sepsis, shock or trauma, the LifeFlow device is an innovative approach to serve hospitals at all levels, as well as EMS providers responding in the field.”

“We are thrilled by the initial success of the LifeFlow device, and we are happy to be partnering with Ballad Health and Ballad Ventures to expand the use of this transformative product,” said Kyle Chenet, chief executive officer at 410 Medical, Inc.

“Ballad Ventures, a strategic investor in 410 Medical, Inc., seeks to discover and advance innovative ideas and products that solve big problems in healthcare here locally, nationally and worldwide. 410 Medical is doing just that with its innovative, life-saving LifeFlow device,” said John Perez, managing director of Ballad Ventures.

Ballad Ventures has made similar investments in other new technologies that Ballad Health has adopted to improve the quality of patient care in its hospitals and the Appalachian Highlands. Formed in 2020, Ballad Ventures is designed to serve as the venture capital arm for Ballad Health, an integrated community health improvement organization serving 29 counties of the Appalachian Highlands in Northeast Tennessee, Southwest Virginia, Northwest North Carolina and Southeast Kentucky.

More information about Ballad Ventures is available at www.balladventures.com, and details about Ballad Health are available at www.balladhealth.org.

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