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Other Hospital Pharmacy topics (including: medical devices)
Evaluation of physical compatability and drug preparation times of the VialMate adaptor in intravenous drug preparation
  1. M. Dooley,
  2. C. Jackson,
  3. J. Coutsouvelis,
  4. S.G. Poole
  1. 1Alfred Health, Pharmacy Department, Melbourne, Australia


Background The Baxter VialMate adaptor is a device used in the reconstitution of intravenously administered medicines. It is connected directly between the medicine phial and a small infusion bag resulting in a closed system with potential advantages associated with reducing errors, time required for drug preparation, consumable costs and contamination. Evaluation of the potential magnitude of these benefits is required to support routine adoption.

Purpose To investigate:

  • physical compatibility of parenteral medicine vials with the VialMate adaptor

  • the time difference between conventional methods and the VialMate adaptor when reconstituting medicines available in intravenous vials.

Materials and methods This research was conducted at an acute care government hospital.

  • All parenteral medicines available in vials and requiring reconstitution prior to administration were identified. The VialMate was attached to the selected phial and then to a sodium chloride 0.9% or glucose 5% 100 mL minibag, then reconstituted. Physical compatibility, defined as the adaptor fitting the phial, was documented.

  • A crossover simulation time and motion study was conducted. Ten specialist oncology nurses were randomised to prepare 10 infusions using conventional reconstitution methods or using the VialMate. The groups then crossed over to prepare 10 infusions using the alternate method. The time taken to complete each preparation was observed and recorded.


  • 45 parenteral medicines were identified; 30 (66%) of these were suitable for reconstitution with the VialMate system. A reference guide was developed for VialMate compatibility, encompassing diluent and infusion suitability.

  • 100 1 g doses of cephazolin infusion were prepared using each method. Average time taken to prepare the infusions using the VialMate and conventional methods were 50.7 s and 69.2 s, respectively (p<0.001). VialMate was 26% faster than the methods currently used.

Conclusions Approximately two thirds of intravenous medicines available in vials were compatible with the Baxter VialMate adaptor. There are significant time savings when using VialMate for preparation of intravenous infusions, compared to conventional preparation.

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