April 18, 2011

Harrington Pediatrics Receives Children’s IV Buggy

Device Invented by Former Hyde Tools Employee, Donated by a Second Former Hyde Employee

SOUTHBRIDGE, Mass. - April 18, 2011 - Harrington Hospital's Pediatrics Department is the recipient of a wonderful new device that allows children to move around and have more freedom when they are tethered to the intravenous tubes that they need for treatment.

A MoveAround IV Buggy was donated to Harrington today by Kenneth Rizner, a Southbridge resident and a retired employee of Hyde Tools in Southbridge. With Rizner when he donated the device was the inventor of the MoveAround IV Buggy, Ralph Lawrence, another retired employee of Hyde Tools.

The buggy looks somewhat like a baby buggy with a few extra special options - it has four wheels, a carrying bin, an IV pole rising above the buggy portion of the device, and even two cup holders. Lawrence invented the MoveAround IV Buggy five years ago when his granddaughter, Autumn Lawrence, was diagnosed with leukemia and had to use an IV.

"I think in this case, you can say that necessity was the grandparent of invention," Lawrence said as he helped deliver the device to the Pediatrics Department at the hospital today. Autumn, who is now 6 years-old, was struggling with an IV on a pole when she was being treated for leukemia. Lawrence got an idea for a contraption that would make Autumn's life easier. He retreated to his garage and invented the prototype of the MoveAround IV Buggy.

"This will be tremendous for us," said Ann Beaudry, Nurse Manager of Harrington's Pediatrics Department. "This is something that children can propel, so they can move around and play." Without the buggy, children must try to manage an IV on a pole, which is cumbersome and restricts their movement.

"I like it," said David Stuckey, a 6-year-old from Southbridge who was in the Pediatrics Department at Harrington, as he tried out the buggy. After a few minutes of use, he "high-fived" Rizner, who donated the buggy in memory of his father, Ed Rizner, who passed away March 27.

"I knew, when Ralph talked to me about his invention, that this would be a wonderful thing to donate to Harrington," Rizner said. "I think this is an ideal solution to children who want to move around when they have an IV."

Hospitals far and wide are finding that the MoveAround IV Buggy is, indeed, an ideal solution for youngsters who would otherwise have to attempt negotiating an IV on a hard-to-move pole. Lawrence, who lives in Coventry, R.I., has come out of retirement from Hyde Tools to form Lawrence Medical Products, which produces the buggies. Lawrence Medical Products has shipped out 57 buggies, which have gone to 40 hospitals. Many of those buggies, which retail for about $350, were donated by individuals who wanted to make sure children had a way to move around when using an IV.