breaking news

Ohio State outlasts Maryland; face Michigan for Big Ten title game berth

Mercy rolls out high-tech medical scrubs in Springfield, other sites


Mercy Health — Springfield’s largest employer — is betting its recent investment in an Orlando company will provide a new level of protection for workers and a potential revenue stream for the future if the product takes off.

Mercy is one of several investors in Vestagen Protective Technologies Inc., a firm that developed new medical scrubs designed to protect workers from exposure to bodily fluids like blood and urine. Material woven into the fabric of the uniforms is designed to make fluids bead up and roll off the clothing instead of absorbing the liquid.

The scrubs are being made available to workers at several of Mercy’s facilities, including Springfield.

RELATED: Mercy Health-Springfield to build medical campus in Enon

“The goal is to provide an alternative that’s safer than traditional scrubs,” said Nanette Bentley, a spokeswoman for Mercy.

Medical staff in Springfield will be able to purchase the new scrubs online through a secure website but they can choose to keep using their traditional scrubs. She said the cost for the new scrubs will be comparable to what employees can purchase now.

MORE: Mercy merger won’t affect Springfield hospital, officials say

The potential harm from bodily fluids is a concern that employees regularly deal with, said Elaine Storrs, chief nursing officer at Mercy Health-Springfield.

“There are any number of instances where you can be unfortunately exposed to something,” Storrs said.

Along with material in the clothing that repels fluid, the new clothing also provides additional protection against bacteria, said DJ Hume, an implementation manager at Vestagen. He said the company was the first to receive approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the product.

READ MORE: $8B Mercy merger part of trend toward massive health systems

“Whenever some fluid hits the uniform, it beads up and by virtue of gravity falls off the uniform,” Hume said.

The new scrubs are also being rolled out at Mercy’s other Ohio locations, including Cincinnati, Toledo and Lima, and it will soon be made available in Kentucky, he said. Mercy has received access to the scrubs at a special price because it was one of Vestagen’s early investors, he said.

DETAILS; Minneapolis firm to offer health care plans in Springfield

The company announced it secured $9.5 million in financing last fall from investors that also include Northwell Ventures and HealthQuest Capital. The scrubs are the company’s only product now, Hume said, but other products are being developed.

Mercy employs about 35,000 workers across Ohio and Kentucky, so rolling the product out across the company’s facilities will also be a good test of whether the new scrubs are popular and effective, Hume said.

MORE BUSINESS NEWS: Clark State, Mercy partner on new clinic to serve campus, community

Mercy would also benefit as an initial investor if the company’s product takes off, Bentley said. This particular investment allows the company to provide a new benefit to employees while potentially providing more long-term revenue.

“It’s a chance to enhance our revenue stream, particularly at a time when health care revenues are up and down,” Bentley said.



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Business

Recalls: Dangerous baby carriers and poisonous tables 
Recalls: Dangerous baby carriers and poisonous tables 

Parents and those cleaning up from this week’s ice storm should check to see if they have this week’s recalled products. Jobs news: Amazon hiring in Butler Co.  Active Series baby carriers by LILLEbaby are being recalled because a clip can detach and cause your child to fall, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission. There...
Beware of shady door-to-door energy sales tactics
Beware of shady door-to-door energy sales tactics

It’s the time of year for door-to-door pitches to get you to switch your energy provider, but consumers need to be wary of shady sales tactics. Norm Krebs of Dayton said he was pressured into an energy contract with a new supplier. Instead of saving money, as he was promised — his bill skyrocketed.  He listened to a pitch from a salesperson...
Dayton Children’s gets approval from accreditation agency
Dayton Children’s gets approval from accreditation agency

Dayton Children’s Hospital is fully accredited by a leading industry rating agency after a preliminary denial earlier this year. The Joint Commission, a nonprofit that accredits hospitals and other health care businesses, had updated the hospital’s accreditation status following a survey at the hospital on Oct. 30. CEO Deborah Feldman had...
Amazon reportedly chooses second headquarters: What it means for Ohio
Amazon reportedly chooses second headquarters: What it means for Ohio

Amazon will reportedly split its second headquarters between New York and Virginia, the Associated Press reported this morning. Instead of one location, Amazon is expected to announce early Tuesday it will build two offices — one in New York and one in Northern Virginia near Washington D.C., the AP reported. The search for a second headquarters...
Cactuses, street graffiti and thousands of sandwiches: The tactics cities used to try to lure Amazon
Cactuses, street graffiti and thousands of sandwiches: The tactics cities used to try to lure Amazon

The guessing game is over: Amazon.com reportedly plans to open new corporate outposts in Northern Virginia and New York, two already crowded metropolitan areas that are likely to become even less affordable with a new influx of tech workers. In some ways, the decision isn't surprising, as Amazon had made it clear that the company wanted to base its...
More Stories