Premier Extends Wound Care Contract to Medline's SilvaSorb Antimicrobial Silver Wound Dressing

MUNDELEIN, IL - The group purchasing arm of San Diego-based Premier, Inc., one of the nation's largest healthcare alliances representing nearly 1,500 hospitals, has expanded its agreement with Medline Industries, Inc. for specialty silver wound care products including Medline's exclusive antimicrobial silver wound dressings called SilvaSorb. Effective immediately, the agreement runs through July 2005.

SilvaSorb is the first product that combines sustained release antimicrobial silver with highly effective moisture management materials for helping heal chronic wounds and reducing infection. The original agreement included Medline's family of controlled-release silver wound care products, including Arglaes.

SilvaSorb is a sterile, single use wound dressing for use in moist wound management. It combines patented MicroLattice technology with the unique, stabilized sustained release silver technology for an effective dressing for use up to seven days. The MicroLattice synthetic matrix helps maintain an optimal environment for healing by managing the moisture level in the wound. MicroLattice donates moisture if required or absorbs up to five times its weight in excess wound exudate. It also controls the release of ionic silver when in contact with moisture.

"SilvaSorb is the first wound care dressing to help control the bioburden in a wound and at the same time maintain the right level of moisture for an optimal wound healing environment," said Jonathan Primer, president of Medline's Dermal Management Division. "To heal efficiently, chronic wounds require fluid management and bioburden reduction without destroying healthy tissue - SilvaSorb accomplishes all of this."

As an effective barrier to a broad spectrum of microorganisms, SilvaSorb may help reduce infection by inhibiting the growth of Staphylococcus aureus, including MRSA, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Escherichia coli, Candida albicans, VRE and other clinically significant microorganisms.

SilvaSorb comes in a variety of formats for optimal use in the management of a range of wound types such as pressure ulcers, diabetic foot ulcers, leg ulcers, skin tears, 1st and 2nd degree burns, grafted wounds and donor sites, surgical wounds, and lacerations and abrasions.

Similar to SilvaSorb, Arglaes uses controlled release technology to deliver silver onto the application site. Arglaes is used effectively to help reduce infection on post surgical incision sites, central line sites, pressure ulcers and minor burns. In addition to a transparent film dressing, Arglaes now comes in a powder form to deliver controlled-release antimicrobial silver to any size, shape or depth of wound.

Silver has long been known as a potent antimicrobial agent. Silver nitrate and silver sulfadiazine are well known agents commonly used to control bioburden in the wounds of burn patients. Although recognized for its antimicrobial properties and low toxicity, silver previously has had two inherent concerns: it can stain tissues and confuse wound assessment, and it has a short half-life of activity which necessitates frequent applications to maintain an effective barrier to microorganisms. SilvaSorb contains silver in a stabilized reservoir that is activated to release ionic silver on contact with moisture. Ionic silver is substantially more active than metallic silver. The release mechanism used by SilvaSorb renders an effective non-toxic level of silver in the wound bed without causing discoloration or staining of the application site.

Medline now has contracts with Premier covering advanced wound care, exam gloves, textiles (including disposable pillows and mattresses), patient aids, disposable protective apparel, caps and shoe covers, non-sterile kits, patient plastic utensils, suction catheters and disposable basin bathing products called ReadyBath.

Medline is ISO 9000, EN 46000 registered and FDA QSR compliant, the most stringent international standards for producing quality products. As a leading supplier of quality products, Medline is asked to serve on major industry quality committees to develop guidelines and standards for medical product use. Some of these organizations include the FDA Midwest Steering Committee, AAMI Sterilization and Packaging Committee and the various ASTM committees.

Silvasorb is manufactured by AcryMed. Based in Portland, Ore., AcryMed specializes in development, contract research, regulatory clearance, and manufacturing of advanced products for tissue repair using its own proprietary tchnologies alone or in combination with those of other companies.