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Doctor Designs OR Cart: An Unusual Success Story

Tue, 03/29/2011 - 1:51pm
All Mark Rockoff, MD, wanted was an operating room cart that could safely transport and discard the needles and tubes he inserted before surgery, hereby eliminating the current inefficient system in every operating room for putting catheters into patients. 

All Mark Rockoff, MD, wanted was an operating room cart that could safely transport and discard the needles and tubes he inserted before surgery, hereby eliminating the current inefficient system in every operating room for putting catheters into patients. 

At the time, the needles and supplies were individually carried to each patient’s bedside, used to set up the lines for IV fluids and medications and arterial monitoring, then carried away again for proper disposal. The patient’s bed served as a temporary work surface for the equipment.

Eight years ago, Rockoff futilely searched for a mobile work station among hundreds of exhibitors at the American Society of Anesthesiologists annual meeting. Frustrated, he spent the flight home sketching out his vision of the cart he wanted. Starting from these early sketches, Rockoff embarked on a project in collaboration with the Harloff Company, a medical supply manufacturer based in Colorado. 

This fall saw the debut of the Start Cart, which Rockoff invented and perfected for use in children’s operating rooms, where he has worked for the past 30 years. The cart consolidates the supplies and disposal containers, features an adjustable worktop and attached needle disposal bin and can be wheeled to each patient’s bed or operating table, offering a safer and more efficient system for handling needles and catheters – and finally achieving the efficiency for which Rockoff had long strived.

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