While needle-free injections aren’t an entirely new technology, PharmaJet is pushing innovation in the field of vaccine immunizations with its Stratis and Topis injection technologies. The company, based out of Golden, Colorado, primarily touts its ability to solve the problems of needle sticks and patient compliance. That said, there is a bigger story to be told and that’s why they’re the focus of our spotlight today.
If you’ve ever given an injection or seen one drawn into a syringe, you’re likely familiar with the waste that the process creates. There’s always that last little bit of fluid that sits in the bottom of the vial, and the process of removing air from the syringe often produces waste as well. PharmaJet’s solution not only provides for safer, easier vaccine delivery via a specially designed “needle-free” syringe delivered via a spring powered injector system, but it also dramatically reduces waste because of how the system operates.
In two separate field studies, PharmaJet’s platform allowed for 2-3x faster administration of vaccines, while capturing 20 percent more fluid from the vials, and generating less than 50% of the weight and waste footprint. Also, because the system does not require the use of sharps, there is an extended saving by eliminating amortized liability costs associated with needles. In some cases, these savings can be up to 50 percent versus traditional injection methods.
The monetary savings are a big story, but it’s also worth reiterating the fact that users of the PharmaJet system can have access to 20 percent more vaccine than providers who use traditional methods of injection. The World Health Organization has already recognized the importance of these savings, awarding PQS status for UNICEF procurement of PharmaJet’s products.
PharmaJet notes some other important points as well:
- There are over 800,000 needle-stick injuries in the US alone each year
- These sticks account for a $2 billion financial burden to an already-strained system
- In developing countries, up to 70 percent of needles are reused
- Patient fear of needles is the leading cause of voluntary noncompliance
The PharmaJet system couples with standard vials via a filling adapter that is used to pierce the top of the vial with a tiny spike. The needle-free syringe is then screwed onto the filling adapter, a verifiably precise amount is pulled into the syringe, and then the syringe is loaded into the spring-powered injector. Since there are no needles, there is no risk of needle-stick injury, and each syringe auto-disables after use. Some patients report that receiving an injection via the PharmaJet system feels similar to the snap of a rubber band, while many patients report no discomfort at all.
There are currently two products — Stratis and Tropis. Stratis is intended for use in intramuscular or subcutaneous injections, while Tropis allows the PharmaJet system to be used for intradermal injections. Both systems have been awarded clearance by the FDA, among numerous other device and vaccine specific approvals globally.
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Image Credit: PharmaJet