Alternative to Diapers for Urinary Incontinence Keeps Patients Dry and Comfortable 24/7

"Liberty is the First New Technology in 50 Years"

Picture this… Your patient, Mr. Jones, is being treated for stroke complications in your hospital. The entire left side of his body is paralyzed, he is unable to move on his own, and thanks to the diapers he is wearing, he is uncomfortable and wet most of the time. You noticed today that the moisture buildup in his skin has lead to painful and unsightly skin breakdown, and you know that if you could only keep him dry, this might have been avoided. What you may not know is that there is a better way – a way to keep him dry and comfortable all day and all night. The way is called Liberty™.

Bedsores and pressure ulcers are the biggest wound care problem in the world, with a patient risk as high as 38 percent(2) and the annual estimated cost of treatment an astonishing $11 billion per year.(3) Additionally, urinary tract infections caused by indwelling catheters (urinary and suprapubic) are the most common infections acquired in U.S. hospitals, resulting in treatment costs of nearly $600 million.(4)

Thanks to recent Medicare mandate CMS 1533, hospitals are now taking on the challenge of rethinking bladder control. Made effective in October 2008, CMS 1533 states that hospitals will no longer be reimbursed for treatment of pressure ulcers or catheter-associated urinary tract infections that develop during a patient’s stay at the facility. CMS 1533, as well as the problems associated with common continence management products, are leading the drive for new products that will produce improved outcomes for managing and monitoring incontinence.

Liberty™, developed by Largo, Fla.-based company BioDerm, Inc., is one such new product that is changing the face of continence management. Liberty is a completely external male continence device made with a skin-friendly hydrocolloid material that seals only to the glans of the penis. Liberty’s non-invasive design ensures that nothing is inserted into the body, all urine is directed away into a leg or bed bag, and the skin is not at risk of breakdown or sores from persistent moisture. Liberty is not a condom catheter and works well with all men’s anatomy; large, small, retracted and uncircumcised.

BioDerm estimates that if half the male patients in the acute care hospital setting were switched from diapers and pads to Liberty, the healthcare industry could save an astounding $1.4 billion in pressure ulcer treatment costs annually. A similar replacement of indwelling catheters with Liberty in half the male hospital inpatients could save a single 400-bed facility approximately $556,000 annually. These estimates take into account associated cost savings for complications and treatment, additional products required to maintain skin integrity, and additional labor by medical staff, making Liberty extremely cost effective when compared to the total cost of diapers and indwelling catheters.

The persistent moisture buildup caused by diapers and the invasive nature of indwelling catheters increase the risk of complications such as skin breakdown, bedsores and UTIs at a rate that cannot be ignored. While CMS 1533 may sound like a simple cost-cutting effort on behalf of Medicare, the ruling is actually forcing hospitals to, first and foremost, improve patient care, and ultimately, their bottom lines. The days when continence management began and ended with fastening a diaper or inserting a catheter are long gone.

Old methodology could mean big out-of-pocket spending by medical facilities, but finally, there’s a better way!

For more information about Liberty and how to introduce this new external option to patients, please visit BioDerm’s Web site or call 800-373-7006. A Customer Care Specialist can help with questions regarding training and support, patient education and quick steps to begin referring patients.

  1. Whittingtin, Kathy J. “National Prevelence and Incidence Study: 6-Year Sequential Acute Care Data”. Nov/Dec 2004.
  2. Lyder, Courtney H. “Pressure Ulcer Prevention and Management”. JAMA. Vol. 289, No. 2. January 8m, 2003
  3. Reddy, Mahuri, MD et. al. “Preventing Pressure Ulcers: A Systematic Review”. The Journal of the American Medical Association. Vol. 296 No.8, August 23/30, 2006.
  4. Jarvis WR. “Selected aspects of the socioeconomic impact of nosocomial infections: morbidity, cost, and prevention”. Infection Control Hospital Epidemiology. 1996; 17:552-557.
  5. Cox, Claire E., MD. "Nosocomial Urinary Tract Infections." Urology. 32 (September 1988) 3: 210-214.