Business Idea: Administer injections using a needle-free injection system.
Pitch: Administering injections is an integral part of both preventative health care and the treatment of sickness and disease. Traditional injections use a needle to penetrate the patient’s skin and insert the vaccine or medicine. While this has been a staple practice in medicine for decades, it has drawbacks. Patients of all ages have a fear of needles, and for some, the fear is so acute they avoid necessary injections. Needles are problematic for healthcare workers. Their sharp points require special containers to dispose of safely, and all healthcare workers worry about receiving an inadvertent needle “stick,” which may contaminate them with someone else’s blood and as a result, potentially someone else’s disease.
In one fell swoop, PharmaJet addresses these problems with the development of a simple, safe needle-free injection system that’s cleared for sale in the United States. Instead of using a needle, it delivers intramuscular or subcutaneous injections through a high-velocity fluid jet that penetrates the skin in one-third of a second. The device is spring powered, so there are no gas canisters to dispose of. Many of the earlier iterations of needleless syringes used bottled gas to power the syringe, which was costly and cumbersome. The PharmaJet system is environmentally friendly in that two of its four parts are consumable and the other two are reused. The consumable components consist of the needle-free syringe and a filling adaptor. The reusable components consist of the injector and a reset station. The only component that comes in contact with the patient’s skin is the needle-free syringe, which is disposed of and replaced after each use. While a PharmaJet injection isn’t painless, it’s gentler than a needle stick for most patients. For most patients, the pain is analogous to being snapped by a small rubber band.
An ancillary benefit of the PharmaJet system is that there are an estimated 16 billion needle injections given each year in developing countries. In many instances, needles are reused. Because of this practice, the World Health Organization estimates that 50 percent of needle-syringe injections are unsafe and that 21 million people contract hepatitis, HIV, and other diseases each year from previously used needles. Once used, the PharmaJet syringe auto-disables and cannot be reused. This feature may make it particularly attractive to nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and other organizations that provide health care assistance in developing countries. The PharmaJet system may also be attractive in select niche markets. For example, detention facilities and prisons struggle with the use of needle syringes because needles are contraband in a detention setting.