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B. Braun Committed to Protecting Healthcare Workers from Exposure to Hazardous Drugs
Date:4/23/2013

BETHLEHEM, Pa., April 23, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- B. Braun Medical Inc. (B.Braun) has made a longstanding commitment to eliminating preventable treatment errors and enhancing patient, clinician and environmental safety with products, services and education focused on sharing best clinical practices. B.Braun will exhibit (Booth 1125) its latest protective engineering devices at the Oncology Nursing Society 38th Annual (ONS 2013) Congress, April 25-28th, in Washington, D.C. 

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130423/PH00081-INFO )

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that approximately 8 million U.S. healthcare workers are potentially exposed to hazardous drugs, including pharmacy and nursing personnel, physicians, operating room personnel, environmental services workers, workers in research laboratories, veterinary care workers, and shipping and receiving personnel.1

"We are passionately committed to ensuring healthcare worker safety and protecting healthcare workers from exposure to hazardous drugs, which is growing at an alarming rate," said Tom Sutton , Vice President of Vascular Access Systems at B.Braun. "We know that oncology nurses and pharmacist technicians are especially susceptible to exposure to antineoplastic (drugs to treat cancer) and other hazardous drugs," added Sutton.

B.Braun's protective engineering devices include OnGuard™, a next-generation closed system drug transfer device (CSTD) with Tevadaptor™ Components, which underscores its commitment to helping protect healthcare workers from exposure to hazardous drugs. It meets the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health definition of a CSTD in actual drug testing with antineoplastic agents.

B.Braun recently added CYTOGUARD™, a closed luer connector to its product portfolio. CYTOGUARD enables a safe and effective closed system for syringes and IV administration sets that helps to reduce exposure to hazardous drugs during preparation, transport, administration and disposal. It was specifically designed to minimize this exposure by maintaining a closed fluid path during the transport from the pharmacy to the floor and after the administration of the drug upon disconnection. CYTOGUARD closed luer connector compliments the OnGuard CSTD.

According to the CDC, published studies have shown that workplace exposures to hazardous drugs can cause both acute and chronic health effects such as skin rashes, adverse reproductive outcomes (including infertility, spontaneous abortions, and congenital malformations), and possibly leukemia and other cancers. The health risk depends on how much exposure a worker has to these drugs and how toxic they are.1

"Despite the evidence and outcomes that are available today, some healthcare workers are still not convinced of the dangers of exposure to hazardous drugs, this is very disturbing to me," said Seth Eisenberg, RN , OCN, and professional practice coordinator for infusion services at Seattle Cancer Care Alliance Ambulatory Clinic in Washington State. "The problem of occupational exposure to hazardous drugs has not been solved and healthcare workers need to be vigilant and constantly educate themselves about the safe handling of hazardous drugs. This is why it is imperative to keep hazardous drugs where they belong. Closed system devices, such as those made by B.Braun and others, offer this first line of defense for healthcare professionals on the front lines of treating oncology patients," added Eisenberg.

To learn more visit B.Braun's Cytotoxic Exposure Information page at www.CytotoxicExposure.com.

About B. Braun
B. Braun Medical Inc. (B.Braun), a leader in infusion therapy and pain management, develops, manufactures, and markets innovative medical products and services to the healthcare industry. The Company is committed to eliminating preventable treatment errors and enhancing patient, clinician and environmental safety. Guided by its "Sharing Expertise®" philosophy, B.Braun continuously exchanges knowledge with customers, partners and clinicians to address the critical issues of improving care and lowering costs.

The B.Braun group of companies includes B.Braun, Aesculap® and CAPS®. B.Braun's U.S. headquarters is located in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, with its global headquarters based in Melsungen, Germany. It employs more than 46,000 employees in more than 50 countries throughout the world. To learn more about B.Braun visit www.bbraunusa.com.

1 http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/topics/hazdrug/
Tevadaptor is a registered trademark of Teva Medical Ltd.


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