Mitchell Multipurpose Health Service has a new portable vein finder device thanks to a partnership between the hospital auxiliary and the local Freemasons’ lodge.
Mitchell MPHS Director of Nursing Kate Field says the hospital auxiliary had undertaken local fundraising activities and the Freemasons had matched those efforts dollar for dollar, making the purchase of the $5000 device possible.
Ms Field says the new vein finder would help improve the procedure for taking blood samples from patients.
“Finding an appropriate vein is not always an easy task. The majority of people have highly visible veins, which enable health care providers to perform fast and accurate venous punctures. However, veins are not always visible in children because of fatty tissue.”
“They are also difficult to locate in the elderly, in people having dark complexions or obese patients. In these instances, vein finders are a very useful piece of equipment. This is because blood contains oxygen and nutrient-carrying haemoglobin molecules, which readily absorb infrared light.”
“When an active infrared vein finder is applied to the skin, the vessels become visible to the naked eye as the absorbed light in the haemoglobin make the veins appear darker, which is in high contrast compared to surrounding tissue. This makes them much easier to find.’’
The vein finder was presented to the hospital and the auxiliary by the Grand Master for the United Grand Lodge of Queensland Alan Townson at a recent dinner.