Ministry Of Defence
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New Life Saving Equipment for Frontline Medics

New Life Saving Equipment for Frontline Medics

News Release issued by the COI News Distribution Service on 18 February 2010

Armed Forces medics in Afghanistan are now able to use an innovative piece of emergency kit to help save the lives of wounded personnel.

The state of the art EnFlowTM 100 Rapid Blood and Fluid Warmer quickly heats up blood and vital fluids to ensure that they reach vital organs and injured areas fast, without affecting the patient’s core temperature. This reduces the risk of complications such as hypothermia and coagulopathy - the inability of the blood to clot after trauma.

Six sets, which are able to be used on board emergency medical helicopters, have been sent to Afghanistan as part of a £35,000 contract supplied to the MoD by Prometheus Medical Ltd. A further two sets, for training purposes, are also included in the package.

Flight Lieutenant Fiona McGlynn is Officer Commanding of a Medical Emergency Response Team based at Camp Bastion:

“Due to the nature of their injuries, many of the patients we treat are in hypovolaemic shock and in need of a transfusion, when we reach them. Giving them cold blood straight from our supplies can have an adverse effect on their overall body temperature and impact on their recovery. The EnFlow will enable us to warm the blood before we carry out a transfusion and ensure the patient arrives in hospital in the best possible condition.”

Minister for Defence Equipment and Support, Quentin Davies, said:

“We are determined to ensure that our brave personnel, who sometimes suffer the most serious injuries, receive the best possible treatment, even in the most challenging of environments. The EnFlow is yet another example of a life saving piece of kit that has been provided to treat wounded soldiers at the point of injury.”

Dr Malcolm Russell, Managing Director of Prometheus Medical, added:

“As a company with its roots in military emergency medicine, we are committed to providing the very best solutions for the Defence Medical Services for the benefit of wounded personnel on the battlefield. Hypothermia in trauma is a real killer and the EnFlow fluid warmer goes some way to redress this problem. We are delighted to be awarded this contract and look forward to fully supporting the Defence Medical Services in its outstanding efforts to provide the wounded with the best possible care.”

Notes to Editors:

1. The Medical Emergency Response Team (MERT) is a specialised team of medical personnel who operate on-call and deploy via helicopter to recover seriously injured casualties from the front-line. The first hour from the time of wounding is absolutely crucial to the casualty’s survival and the quicker the casualty can be recovered and
given specialist medical assistance the greater the chances of survival.

2. The MERT comprises a mixture of paramedics and specialist nurses and is led by a Consultant Anaesthetist or a Consultant in Emergency Medicine. The UK is the only nation that operates such a high level of immediate, in-flight medical care.

3. The delivery of blood by the MERT in the helicopter is a key life-saving medical capability and essential in the management of massive trauma.

4. Transfusion of blood forward of the UK Role 3 Hospital is now accepted as a key life saving intervention. It prevents traumatic cardiac arrest and reduces the metabolic disturbances associated with trauma as a consequence of blood loss.

5. A picture of the EnFlowTM 100 Rapid Blood and Fluid Warmer is available on the Defence News Imagery website: www.dni.mod.uk.
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6. For more information contact Beth Cowley, MoD Press Office on 0207 218 3255 or Hannah Swingler, Defence Equipment and Support Press Office on 0117 913 7888.

Contacts:

Ministry of Defence
NDS.MOD@coi.gsi.gov.uk

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