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UAB Hospital to Integrate Advanced Symbiq(TM) Infusion Device With EHR to Enhance Safety and Clinician Workflow

LAKE FOREST, Ill., March 2 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Hospira, Inc. (NYSE: HSP), a leading provider of clinical information and medication delivery technologies, today announced a partnership with the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) Hospital to implement one of the first integrations of the wireless Symbiq™ infusion device with built-in Hospira MedNet™ safety software and the Cerner Millennium® EHR through the Cerner CareAware iBus™ system. Integrating these technologies enables auto-programmed infusion pumps, minimizing manual programming of the device and helping to decrease medication dosing errors, increase compliance with medication orders and reduce pump programming time.

Marking one of the first planned auto-programming implementations with the technologically advanced Symbiq device, the Hospira and UAB Hospital partnership illustrates Hospira's ongoing commitment to provide solutions that drive safety and efficiencies in healthcare. Auto programming of another Hospira infusion device already has shown a streamlined workflow, reducing the number of infusion device programming steps, and a 24.8 percent reduction in the amount of time nurses spend programming the pumps.(1)

The Symbiq auto-programming implementation builds on UAB's existing culture of innovation and technological leadership. Once the technology is fully implemented, UAB Hospital clinicians will manage bedside patient medication administration using more than 1,000 wireless, auto-programmed enabled Symbiq devices across the facility. When completed, this will represent the largest installation of wireless Symbiq pumps in the Southeast region of the United States, and the first Symbiq auto-programming deployment in this part of the country.

"As a leading academic center, we are already providing a benchmark level of care, and we are pleased the Hospira partnership will enable us to integrate technologies and provide yet another level of safety and quality control," said Melisa Kelly, director, Application Services, UAB Health System. "We are proud to have been recognized as a Hospira Center of Excellence and look forward to collaborating with other institutions working to reach a similar level of advanced technology integration."

"The team at UAB Hospital is leading the healthcare technology adoption curve to ensure their clinicians have the latest tools to address patient safety and drive clinician efficiencies," said Symeria Hudson, vice president, Medication Management Systems, U.S., Hospira. "At Hospira we are proud of the solutions we offer, which are at the forefront of driving safety and medication administration enhancements in modern medicine."

Auto programming infusion devices allows nurses to use individual barcodes on the patients' hospital I.D. wristbands, intravenous (I.V.) bag and device to automatically send information from the EHR into the infusion device, and confirm that the right drug and right dose is being administered to the right patient, at the right time and by the right route. As a result, clinicians have fewer programming steps and can seamlessly verify the five rights of medication administration to ensure the pump is programmed as ordered by the physician. The Symbiq device with Hospira MedNet is connected to the Cerner Millennium® EHR through the Cerner CareAware iBus™, a plug-and-play device connectivity architecture that enables two-way communication between Hospira infusion systems and the EHR.

The Symbiq LCD touch screen -- the largest available on infusion pumps -- enables easy upgrades to future functionality. The UAB Hospital team has completed and validated the first phase of the Symbiq wireless rollout in the hospital's hematology and oncology units. As a result of the initial success, the hospital is beginning the next expansion phase to implement the Symbiq devices on the remaining hospital units. University of Alabama at Birmingham Hospital will then start enabling the auto- programming functionality of the pumps.

Through its Hospira partnership, UAB Hospital will serve as a Hospira Center of Excellence, benchmarking hospital best practices for using technology to enhance patient safety and clinician workflow. Hospira will connect hospitals with UAB to serve as a resource regarding the technology implementation process. Situated among major research centers and clinics, UAB Hospital serves as a best practices center for other hospitals within the Southeast and across the nation. Its new 900-bed facility represents a model in design innovation for hospitals of the future and is equipped with state-of-the-art digital and wireless technology.  

The EHR-connected Symbiq device will be demonstrated at Hospira booth number 4621 at the Health Information Management Systems Society Annual Conference and Exhibition (HIMSS10), in Atlanta through March 4.

About the UAB Health System

The UAB Health System includes all of the University of Alabama at Birmingham's patient care activities, including UAB Hospital, the Callahan Eye Foundation Hospital and The Kirklin Clinic. UAB is the state of Alabama's largest employer and an internationally renowned research university and academic health center whose professional schools and specialty patient care programs are consistently ranked as among the nation's top 50; find more information at and

About Hospira

Hospira, Inc. is a global specialty pharmaceutical and medication delivery company dedicated to Advancing Wellness™. As the world leader in specialty generic injectable pharmaceuticals, Hospira offers one of the broadest portfolios of generic acute-care and oncology injectables, as well as integrated infusion therapy and medication management solutions. Through its products, Hospira helps improve the safety, cost and productivity of patient care. The company is headquartered in Lake Forest, Ill., and has approximately 13,500 employees. Learn more at

(1) Prusch, Amanda E., et al. "Introducing intravenous interoperability: expanding the pharmacist's role in medication administration." American Society of Health-System Pharmacists Mid-Year Meeting and Exhibition Award Paper Abstracts (December 2009). Accessed on Dec. 1, 2009.

SOURCE Hospira, Inc.

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SOURCE Hospira, Inc.
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