The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) has backed the use of a warming mattress during surgery to prevent inadvertent hypothermia in its latest published guidelines.
Clinical evidence gathered by the Medical Technologies Advisory Committee (MTAC) suggests the Iditherm mattress has the same effect as forced air warming – a technique that continues to be championed by NICE.
The estimated average NHS cost saving for the Inditherm mattress is in the region of £9800 per theatre each year as calculated by the MTAC.
"We are very pleased to publish guidance today advising that the Inditherm patient warming mattress should be considered for use in patients at risk of inadvertent hypothermia," said Professor Carole Longson, director of the NICE Centre for Health Technology Evaluation.
"The evidence examined indicates that as well as benefiting patients by reducing a range of serious complications associated with inadvertent hypothermia, it also benefits the NHS by saving money."
Benefits of the Iditherm mattress include its re-usability, low energy consumption and the fact it warms the patient without unintentionally also warming the surgical team.