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Covidien Announces Its Support for The Joint Commission’s Sentinel Event Alert Recommendations on the “Safe use of opioids in hospitals”

BOULDER, Colo.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Aug. 14, 2012-- Covidien (NYSE: COV), a leading global provider of healthcare products and recognized innovator in patient monitoring and respiratory care devices, today announced its support for The Joint Commission’s recent Sentinel Alert recommendations for the “Safe use of opioids in hospitals.”

Opioids, frequently given to patients for pain management, may be associated with increased risk for dangerous complications from respiratory depression. The Joint Commission’s newly published recommendations address these risks by urging hospitals to establish procedures for accurate pain-level assessment as well as continuous monitoring of patients’ blood oxygenation and ventilation through pulse oximetry and capnography.

“These recommendations represent an important milestone that should enhance patient safety in hospitals nationwide,” said Scott Kelley, M.D., Chief Medical Officer, Respiratory and Monitoring Solutions, Covidien. “In particular, capnography, which monitors adequacy of ventilation through exhaled carbon dioxide, provides an early indication of hypoventilation or respiratory distress, and represents one option for enabling clinicians to detect and address these health threats sooner.”

The Joint Commission’s guidelines align with recommendations issued by the Anesthesia Patient Safety Foundation (APSF) and the Institute for Safe Medication Practices (ISMP) calling for continuous monitoring of ventilation of hospitalized patients receiving opioids postoperatively.

Covidien is a global leader in capnography devices, offers market-leading respiratory function technologies and a complete portfolio of monitoring solutions that can help hospitals meet The Joint Commission, APSF and ISMP recommendations. The Company’s technologies include Integrated Pulmonary Index™ and a recently expanded suite of Nellcor™ pulse oximetry solutions.

Covidien also helps hospitals comply with patient safety standards by partnering with healthcare providers to offer education and training. For example, when capnography is implemented, Covidien experts work with hospital staff to ensure they understand the clinical need for capnography as well as how to interpret capnography monitor readings to best support clinical decision making.

“Covidien’s ongoing partnerships with healthcare providers to develop training and education around issues impacting patient safety, demonstrate our ongoing commitment to delivering medical solutions that meet the highest standards of care,” said Robert J. White, President, Respiratory & Monitoring Solutions, Covidien.

ABOUT COVIDIEN

Covidien is a leading global healthcare products company that creates innovative medical solutions for better patient outcomes and delivers value through clinical leadership and excellence. Covidien manufactures, distributes and services a diverse range of industry-leading product lines in three segments: Medical Devices, Pharmaceuticals and Medical Supplies. With 2011 revenue of $11.6 billion, Covidien has 43,000 employees worldwide in more than 65 countries, and its products are sold in over 140 countries. Please visit www.covidien.com to learn more about our business.

Source: Covidien

Covidien
Rhonda Luniak, 303-305-2263
Vice President
R&MS Communications
rhonda.luniak@covidien.com
or
Bruce Farmer, 508-452-4372
Vice President
Public Relations
bruce.farmer@covidien.com
or
Coleman Lannum, CFA, 508-452-4343
Vice President
Investor Relations
cole.lannum@covidien.com
or
Todd Carpenter, 508-452-4363
Director
Investor Relations
todd.carpenter@covidien.com

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