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IV fluids are an essential element in treating battlefield casualties. Currently, war reserve material warehouses and field hospitals stock large numbers of IV bags due to the logistic limitations on resupply and the necessity to be prepared for the worst. IV fluid storage is further limited by shelf life, resulting in most of those bags transported at great expense expiring before they ever get used.
The U.S. Air Force is promoting a visionary medical technology known as Field Intravenous Fluid Reconstitution (FIVR) based on ARA's SWFI Generator technology to reduce logistic costs by filling intravenous bags as needed at battlefield hospitals. FIVR technology will simplify logistics, eliminate waste, and ensure that our soldiers receive the life saving fluids they need.
Since 2007 ARA has been the prime contractor for the Air Force's FIVR program. The goal is to build and validate FIVR systems to obtain FDA approval of the FIVR device and IV fluids. The FIVR system is being designed for minimal operator assistance. Preloaded IV bags will be placed in a magazine and the control system-activated. From that point, the machine moves the bag through a series of stations until it is filled with sterile water by the generator. The final constituted bag is then sealed and released for immediate use or temporary storage. The program passed its critical design review in March 2011 and the finished system just completed its Factory Acceptance Test. The FIVR team at ARA's North Florida Division is responsible for engineering, validation, test and evaluation, and quality assurance.
The large project also involves seven other subcontractors, several service laboratories, and FDA compliance consultants.