Members of Norman Regional Health System’s PICC team stand with their new tool, the Sapiens*TCS. They are (from left to right) Veronica Robbins, Angela Wright, Marla Harrell, Cindy Clinkenbeard, and Mary Quinton. Norman Regional is the first health system in the state to use this technology.
Norman Regional is the first hospital in the state to use a new technology to locate the placement of a peripherally inserted central catheter or PICC.
Usually, after a PICC is placed, the tip location is confirmed by x-ray. But now a new FDA-approved device, called Sapiens*TCS by Bard Access Systems, provides real-time PICC catheter tip location information by using the patient’s cardiac electrical activity. Through a patient’s heart beat and ECG, nurses and health care professionals can pinpoint the catheter tip’s location. This technology not only reduces radiation exposure for patients, but also shortens the time the procedure takes.
“It’s faster and allows for more accurate placement,” said Dr. Aaron Boyd, a physician at Norman Regional who is board-certified in pulmonary disease and critical care medicine. “This is a more reliable way to place the line and it shortens the procedure which is always good for patients.”
Norman Regional has a PICC team comprised of five specially trained registered nurses. The team has placed more than 7,000 PICC lines and usually places 170 a month between all three of Norman Regional’s hospitals. The nurses learned about the new device at a conference and are only the 12th hospital in the nation to begin using it, said Angela Wright, RN.
A patient might need a PICC for a variety of reasons including intravenous nutrition, antibiotic therapy or some chemotherapy regimens. A PICC is inserted into a vein in a patient’s upper arm, and then advanced through increasingly larger veins towards the heart until the tip rests in its desired location. The PICC team nurses provide this procedure to a variety of patients, from ages 18 and up, in most areas of the hospital from oncology to the Intensive Care Unit.
“It’s a good team. They’ve taken the initiative to use state-of-the-art technology,” Dr. Boyd said.
The members of the PICC team are Cindy Clinkenbeard, Marla Harrell, Mary Quinton, Veronica Robbins, and Angela Wright.