Neural connector (NRFit®) changeover
Spinal, epidural and nerve block equipment is changing. The Luer connectors currently used in hospitals in Australia and New Zealand are being discontinued and all hospitals and healthcare facilities are encouraged to change over to ISO 80369-6 compliant devices.
The new design is similar to Luer with a slightly smaller mating interface. A trademark name associated with devices compliant with this standard is NRFit®. Hospitals will stand to lose their accreditation status if they do not comply. There are three main suppliers of neural connectors in Australia; B-Braun, Pajunk and Smiths. A key role of procurement officers will be in ensuring smooth transition to the use of these new connectors.
Why is this change happening?
The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) has overseen the development of a series of connectors for devices used for different clinical applications as a safety initiative to avoid wrong route administration of medicines and substances.
The ISO 80369 series of standards (known as Small Bore Connectors) define the dimensions of the connectors for different clinical uses which cannot couple with each other. Part 6 of this series pertains to connectors used with devices for neuraxial and other neural procedures and is known as ISO 80369-6 Small bore connectors for liquids and gases in healthcare applications — Part 6: Connectors for neuraxial applications.
We have collated a comprehensive collection of ACSQHC advisories, articles, publications, and case studies relating to the changeover from Luer devices to ISO 80369-6 devices in our NRFit Changeover Library Guide, including a fact sheet for practitioners.