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University Hospitals Case Medical Center Presents Study On The Elimination Of Retained Surgical Sponges

IRVINE, Calif., Feb. 27, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- SurgiCount Medical, Inc., the wholly-owned operating subsidiary of Patient Safety Technologies, Inc. (OTCBB: PSTX), today announced that its market leading retained sponge prevention solution will be featured in a poster presentation by the University Hospitals Case Medical Center (UHCMC) at the Association of periOperative Registered Nurses (AORN) 60th Congress March 3-7 in San Diego, Calif..

Titled "Elimination of Retained Surgical Sponges" the case study discusses the background of the issue of retained sponges, the decision by UHCMC to implement a retained sponge prevention technology, the selection of the SurgiCount Safety-Sponge® System and the successful elimination of the issue through the implementation of the solution and a collaborative patient safety improvement initiative.  After a system-wide implementation in October of 2011, over 472,000 Safety-Sponge® products have been scanned to date and the entire system has been able to achieve zero retained sponge events.  Additional costs of adoption were found to be outweighed by the advancements in patient safety.     

"Incorporating the Safety-Sponge® System into our practice has enabled us to provide our patients with a higher standard of patient care," stated Sandra K. Dankelson , BSN, RN at UHCMC. "Retained surgical items are among one of the most common preventable medical mistakes. Our data shows that the use of this technology in conjunction with our manual counting protocol ensures these costly, dangerous medical mistakes do not happen in our hospitals."

"We are proud to support University Hospitals Case Medical Center in their steadfast commitment to patient safety and to include them in our growing list of user hospitals that have eliminated this preventable adverse event," stated Brian E. Stewart , President and CEO of SurgiCount Medical, Inc. "We thank them for sharing their success and look forward to supporting others in achieving the same outcome."   

Retained foreign bodies are estimated to represent up to 49.8 percent of all reported surgical never events[1] with surgical sponges representing the vast majority of items unintentionally retained[2]. Estimated occurrence rates of retained sponge incidents are as often as 1 in every 1,000 to 1,500 abdominal operations, to 1 in every 8,000 in patient operations[2].  With an estimated 32 million surgical procedures annually in the U.S., there are approximately 4,000 retained sponge incidents each year, 11 every day. The negative impact to patient outcomes from retained foreign objects varies and can be significant, with permanent injuries in an estimated 16 percent of incidents and patient mortality in 5 percent[1]. Cost ramifications can be considerable and include legal expenses and awards, non-reimbursable healthcare services, loss of time, loss of reputation for involved individuals and facilities and the negative impact on pay for performance metrics. 

About University Hospitals
University Hospitals serves the needs of patients through an integrated network of hospitals, outpatient centers and primary care physicians. At the core of our health system is University Hospitals Case Medical Center. The primary affiliate of Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, University Hospitals Case Medical Center is home to some of the most prestigious clinical and research centers of excellence in the nation and the world, including cancer, pediatrics, women's health, orthopedics and spine, radiology and radiation oncology, neurosurgery and neuroscience, cardiology and cardiovascular surgery, organ transplantation and human genetics. Its main campus includes the internationally celebrated UH Rainbow Babies & Children's Hospital, ranked among the top children's hospitals in the nation; UH MacDonald Women's Hospital, Ohio's only hospital for women; and UH Seidman Cancer Center, part of the NCI-designated Case Comprehensive Cancer Center at Case Western Reserve University. University Hospitals Case Medical Center is the 2012 recipient of the American Hospital Association – McKesson Quest for Quality Prize for its leadership and innovation in quality improvement and safety. For more information, go to

About Patient Safety Technologies, Inc. and SurgiCount Medical
Patient Safety Technologies, Inc., through its wholly-owned operating subsidiary SurgiCount Medical, Inc., provides the Safety-Sponge® System, a solution clinically proven to improve patient safety and reduce healthcare costs by helping prevent one of the most common errors in surgery, retained surgical sponges.  The solution is currently used in over 285 government, teaching and community hospitals across the U.S., including 7 of the 2012-2013 US News and World Report Best Hospitals Honor Roll recipients, representing more total users and more Honor Roll recipients than all competing retained sponge prevention solutions combined.  For more information, contact SurgiCount Medical, Inc. at (949) 387-2277 or visit

[1] Mehtsun, et al. Surgical never events in the United States, J Surg 2012;10.005
[2] Cima RR, Kollengode A, Garnatz J, et al. Incidence and characteristics of potential and actual retained foreign object events in surgical patients. J Am Coll Surg 2008;207:80-87

SOURCE Patient Safety Technologies, Inc.
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