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Medclair and BPR Agreement

Monday, 4 July 2022 08:00:00 Europe/London

BPR Medical and Medclair, a leading Sweden-based specialist in safe nitrous oxide use, have signed an agreement that gives BPR exclusive rights to supply Medclair’s mobile nitrous oxide conversion technology in the UK and Ireland.

Under the agreement, BPR will distribute and provide support for Medclair’s MDU device, which when combined with BPR’s Ultraflow demand valve and a gas scavenging system, captures nitrous oxide and converts 99% of the gas to harmless nitrogen and oxygen.

Nitrous oxide is used by 80 per cent of women in labour in the UK. It is also used widely in other hospital departments, from endoscopy to dentistry. The gas is one of the most environmentally harmful anaesthetic gases, with a global warming potential 298 times that of carbon dioxide (CO2).

Jonas Lundh, CEO of Medclair, said: “Capturing and converting nitrous oxide emissions could reduce NHS anaesthetic gas emissions by a third if the technology was implemented across all Hospital Trusts in the UK. The agreement with BPR, which has a strong presence and reputation in the market with its inhaled analgesia products, is a major step forward in our goal of supporting the NHS with its environmental targets.”

Richard Radford, Managing Director of BPR Medical, said: “The NHS has one of the most developed nitrous oxide programmes in the world. It delivers safe, efficient pain relief to hundreds of patients every day. But the gas has a significant impact on the environment and can also affect working conditions for staff.

Richard and Jonas

“There is now a solution though, which has been successfully deployed in Scandinavia for almost two decades and is already being used in hospitals across the UK. Our agreement with Medclair means we can continue to help more Trusts play their part in achieving ‘net zero’ goals and meet audit standards.

“As innovators of safer medical gas therapy, we are bringing together our Ultraflow analgesia system and Medclair’s MDU technology to extend our commitment to improving patient care and the work environment for healthcare professionals.”

Head of Sales & Marketing at BPR Medical, Safoura Sardari added, “Early adopters are already embracing this technology, including Trusts in Scotland, the Northeast, London, Wales and the Southwest. We are now expanding our business development team to meet the increasing demand from the NHS and private healthcare settings across the UK.”

The Delivering a ‘Net Zero’ National Health Service report, published in 2020, sets out a goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 80 per cent with the next six to ten years and achieving ‘net zero’ by 2040.

 

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Home oxygen fire deaths being under-reported

Thursday, 26 May 2022 08:00:00 Europe/London

Media analysis undertaken by BPR Medical suggests serious home oxygen fire incidents are not being identified by the EU Medical Device Vigilance System, with inconsistent reporting processes putting patients at risk across the continent.

 

Available statistics from the European Industrial Gases Association (EIGA) suggest home oxygen fires caused 15 fatalities between 2013 and 2017 across 16 countries in the EU. Yet our media analysis in another five year period revealed 23 deaths in France and Italy alone.

 

Home oxygen therapy is a lifeline for hundreds of thousands across the continent, but it can also be a serious hazard when brought into contact with an ignition source - usually a lit cigarette. The fire can spread through the patient’s tubing to the source of the oxygen - leading to deadly flash fires and even explosions.

 Home Oxygen Whitepaper

Our media analysis between 2017-2021 revealed that there were 42 instances of death and serious injury in France and Italy caused by such fires. This included serious injury to fire personnel and nearby residents.

 

Based on the available EIGA figures, deaths from home oxygen users are 0.75 per 100,000 across the EU. However, our report suggests this is more likely to be between the 3.3 deaths per 100,000 patients found in Japan and the 6.6 deaths per 100,000 seen in the US.

 

The reporting of serious incidents involving home oxygen devices is already required under the Medical Device Vigilance System in the European Union. However, these figures suggest there is a problem with how this system is working.

 

Speaking on the report, our Managing Director Richard Radford said, “These findings are hugely concerning given the half a million home oxygen therapy users there are across Europe. Important decisions about fire safety and home oxygen use are being based on incomplete data. We’re now calling on the home oxygen sector in France, Italy and other European countries to take urgent action to recognise, report and reduce the problem of home oxygen-related fires resulting in death and serious injury.”

 

The full report and other resources can be found here: Europe Firebreaks


 

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Hundreds of lives lost in home oxygen fires, our new report reveals

Monday, 8 November 2021 08:00:00 Europe/London

Over 500 fires involving home oxygen, resulting in over 300 deaths including two firefighters, have been reported by the US media since 2017, our new study – Firebreaks: A risk-based approach to safer home oxygen delivery - has revealed.

 

There were also reports of over 130 serious injuries, including a further two firefighters, as well as injuries to nearly 200 other people, among them 17 firefighters and two police officers, according to our research. Nearly 200 properties were reportedly destroyed during this period, with fires resulting in damage to over 70 neighboring buildings, and over 100 incidents leading to residents being forced out of their properties.

 

 

The research also examines the impact of burn injuries resulting from home oxygen fires. Over 1,000 patients are treated for burns resulting from fires involving home oxygen every year, according to data from Emergency Room admissions. Severe burn cases can cost $1 million to treat, even without complications, and very complex cases can exceed $10 million. This suggests that the true cost of treating victims of home oxygen fires could run into hundreds of millions of dollars every year.

 

Our report reveals:

 

      • 567 incidents were reported by the media between December 2017 and July 2021.

 

      • There were 316 reported deaths in this period, equating to one death every four days.
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      • Two firefighters have been killed attending home oxygen fires in the past three years, the most recent during a house fire in Oklahoma City in July 2021. In the previous incident, in October 2018, a firefighter fell victim to a piece of shrapnel from an exploding propane tank.
      •  
      • 134 individuals, including 17 firefighters, suffered serious injuries from incidents. The majority of these were sustained by oxygen users and included either burns or smoke inhalation injuries, or both.
      •  
      • Exploding cylinders are referenced in a third of all reported home oxygen fires, posing a significant threat to third parties, including emergency services.
      •  
      • Nearly a third of incidents resulted in the destruction of the resident’s, or another, dwelling.
      •  
      • The majority of oxygen fires (70%) were either caused, or were likely to have been caused, by patients smoking while using oxygen therapy.

 

Evidence has found that more than half of patients with burns attributable to smoking on home oxygen die within a year of being discharged, therefore subsequent deaths from injuries may not be reported. This suggests that the likely annual death toll is higher than previous estimates by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and that the actual figure could be twice as high.

 

Citing a study by the Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center, our report points out that patient education alone is not a solution to the problem. The center distributed low-cost thermal fuses, which cut off the flow of oxygen in the tubing in the event of a fire, to patients, and found that the number of patients admitted to hospital with oxygen-related burns dropped by two-thirds.

 

Richard Radford, Managing Director, BPR Medical, said, “This data confirms that home oxygen fires represent a material public health issue. Incidents not only affect oxygen patients themselves, but also their families, their neighbors, and the emergency personnel who attend fires. It also reveals the enormous human and financial impact of burns.

 

“The evidence for fitting thermal fuses to oxygen tubing, alongside other measures, continues to grow. An American home oxygen user is still 20 times more likely to die in a home oxygen fire than a home oxygen user in England, where they are fitted as standard.

 

“There is a potential risk of fire for all home oxygen patients, and universal use of firebreaks would be ideal. Installing firebreaks among high-risk patients, however, could significantly reduce the impact of these devastating fires.”

 

The full report can be found here: www.firebreaks.info/unitedstates/

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