ConvaTec is a Skillman, NJ-based developer and marketer of medical technologies for community and hospital care. Recently the company introduced packaging changes for several of its wound-care products, including Aquacel®, Aquacel® Ag, Versiva® XC®, Kaltostat®, and CarboFlex® dressings. The packaging improvements are designed to help healthcare professionals identify the correct products quickly and then open and apply them with improved speed and ease. The redesigned packaging also incorporates lighter-weight materials and more elements that can be recycled.
External packaging changes include new color coding designed to help healthcare professionals instantly identify the specific dressing they need from either the front or side panel of the package. Brand and product size information are now also clearly indicated on the package front and side panels, and sterile inner packaging for some products provides step-by-step product application instructions. The external packaging was redesigned to incorporate more elements that can be recycled, supporting the growing number of hospital initiatives to “go green” and reduce packaging waste.
ConvaTec product design engineers worked with healthcare workers to create color coding for different products so that they can be quickly and easily identified. Modifications to internal packaging also make it easier to access the product. For example, the inner pouch for Versiva® XC® Dressing also includes larger flaps, making it easier to open.
ConvaTec makes products at its own facilities using custom-designed automated packaging technology
“We are always seeking input from our customers and key wound care leaders. These changes in packaging for our wound dressings were developed based on information from many leaders who mentioned that they want to be able to quickly identify and access the products they need,” says Kevin Leach, marketing director, ConvaTec Wound Therapeutics.
One source of information that helped prompt the package redesign was a recent study in the Journal of Wound Ostomy and Continence. It noted that changes in packaging design including the addition of clearer and more prominent application instructions can lead to improved accuracy and greater patient safety. The study also found that nurses feel more confident applying dressings to patients if packaging also presents easy-to-follow instructions.
“With easy-to-follow application instructions and new color coding to differentiate, the improvements in the packaging for our most popular dressings will help to make it easier than ever for wound care teams to deliver the appropriate care their patients need,” Leach says. “ In our redesign process we focused on how we could repackage our dressings to make it easier for wound care teams to deliver the appropriate care their patients need, and how we could include lighter packaging materials to reduce waste.
“Increasingly, our customers are informing us that they need to reduce waste. Our new packaging is a win-win for hospitals and for healthcare workers because they are now easier to identify and use while also using less packaging material and including more recyclable content,” Leach adds.
The wound care market
Looking at the broader wound care market, ConvaTec notes that according to a new analysis by Espicom Business Intelligence, the demand for advanced wound care products will rise 6.8% by 2015. It is estimated that wound care costs the U.S. healthcare system $20 billion each year, including more than $4 billion spent on wound management products. Proper wound care management helps to improve patient mobility, quality of life, and well-being.
The company explains that the number of chronic wounds is projected to continue to rise due to the aging population and high rates of diabetes and obesity in the U.S. Effective treatment methods that are easily identified and applied by healthcare workers will help meet patient needs with improved speed and precision. As the number of patients with chronic wounds increases, healthcare professionals will need products that are user-friendly and allow for faster access during dressing changes.
According to a recent study in the Journal of Wound Ostomy and Continence, changes in packaging design, including the addition of clearer and more prominent application instructions, can lead to improved accuracy and greater patient safety.