Spacelabs Healthcare

ARKON™ Anesthesia Delivery System

The OR and office become one

Spacelabs Healthcare develops and supports some of the world’s most respected medical devices and services. The company challenged Design Concepts to envision a dramatically different anesthesia system — one that supports the highest level of patient care while meeting the needs of clinicians.

A team of researchers and industrial designers spread out across four continents to interview and observe, developing deep insights on the current market, the clinical needs of patients, and the user needs of anesthesiologists. The team observed that current machines force the anesthesiologist to face away from the patient. The machines also fail to support the way anesthesiologists work, lacking necessary features to help them manage their practices.

The result of this extensive research is a flexible design that contains two integrated activity centers known as the “clinical” and “office” sides of the ARKON anesthesia delivery system.

The ARKON is the first system designed to allow the anesthesiologist to view the patient and system controls simultaneously during gas delivery. The “clinical” side features an expandable cabinet that safely moves the monitors, breathing circuit, and other clinical components without crimping or damaging tubes and cables. This enables the unit to be optimally positioned for a wide-angle view of the OR that keeps the patient in view.

The LED and task lighting systems focus the user on only the controls and information necessary at that moment, an important feature during procedures performed in dark operating rooms.

Many surgeries take hours, so clinicians often sit at an anesthesia machine for long durations. During that time, an anesthesiologist may write notes, read an electronic medical record or fill out paperwork. Traditional anesthesia machines don’t offer comfortable workspaces for these tasks. ARKON’s “office” area provides storage for equipment and paperwork, adjustable-height and extended work surfaces, task lighting, USB ports, easy-to-reach electrical outlets, and flexible shelving.

Introduced in 2012, ARKON keeps the focus on patient safety while meeting the practical needs of anesthesiologists. The system won Silver at the 2014 Medical Device Excellence Awards in the Emergency Medicine and Critical Care category.

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