Surgical Instruments

Latest Issue of OR Manager
January 2018
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Greater vigilance needed to combat ureteroscope contamination

A new study by Ofstead & Associates (St Paul, Minnesota) is the latest to raise concerns about infections associated with endoscopic procedures. The study, which focused on ureteroscopes, found that the techniques used to clean and sterilize or high-level disinfect flexible ureteroscopes are not sufficient and leave behind contamination including…

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By: Judith M. Mathias, MA, RN
November 15, 2017
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Latest steam sterilization standard available from AAMI

The Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI) in September released the newest version of the ANSI/AAMI ST 79 Comprehensive Guide to Steam Sterilization and Sterility Assurance in Healthcare Facilities. This document, last updated in 2013, has been under a major review for changes in the format presentation and…

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By: Susan Klacik, BS, CRCST, CHL, CIS, ACE, FCS
November 15, 2017
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Preference card cleanup projected to cut costs across departments

Fine-tuning physician preference cards to reduce instrument use and sterilization is a well-known way to cut costs, but one that is often hard to implement. At Bassett Healthcare (Cooperstown, New York), we had success with a simple intervention involving collaboration with nearly 50 surgeons across multiple departments. We reviewed more…

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By: OR Manager
May 17, 2017
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Consider a sterilization subject matter expert to increase compliance

Compliance with sterilization and disinfection standards is critical to patient safety, yet Joint Commission surveyors continue to cite healthcare facilities for noncompliance with high-level disinfection (HLD) and sterilization processes during accreditation surveys. Organizations with HLD and/or sterilization breaches during a survey may receive an immediate threat to life or adverse…

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By: Susan Klacik, BS, ACE, CHL, CRCST, FCS
May 17, 2017
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IUSS drops to 5% with team intervention

Reducing immediate use steam sterilization (IUSS) can be challenging, but adhering to standards is essential not only for patient safety, but also for successful accreditation surveys. “Accrediting organizations are hitting hard on all of sterilization, but especially IUSS,” says Rose Seavey, MBA, BA, RN, CNOR, CRCST, CSPDT, president and CEO…

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By: OR Manager
January 18, 2017
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What You Should Know About Reprocessing Surgical Instruments On Demand Webinar

Keeping up to date with recommended practices for reprocessing surgical instruments is a challenge, but it’s something OR managers need to do. The speaker will give you the key points about cleaning, packaging, and sterilization and will discuss the importance of following the manufacturer’s instructions for use (IFU) to reduce…

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Cleaning verification tests boost confidence in instrument decontamination

Even when recommended cleaning and disinfection protocols are followed, residual contamination of instruments is possible, researchers have found (OR Manager, November 2016, 1, 10-11). Visual inspection can catch some signs of contamination, but it won’t reveal problems within channels and other areas of complex medical devices. That’s why it’s important…

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By: OR Manager
November 14, 2016
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Process improvements raise SPD standards and quality

When audits revealed areas of deficit in the sterile processing departments (SPDs) of the Memorial Hermann Health System in Houston, leaders pulled together a team to help implement a quality improvement plan. By analyzing and standardizing their processes, creating auditing tools, and educating staff, they significantly increased quality scores throughout…

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By: OR Manager
July 19, 2016
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FDA: Pentax validates reprocessing instructions for ED-3490 TK Video Duodenoscope

Editor's Note The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on February 19 announced that it had reviewed updated reprocessing instructions and validation data issued by Pentax Medical (Montvale, New Jersey) for its ED-3490 Video Duodenoscope. The FDA recommends that facilities train staff on the updated instructions and implement them as soon…

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By: Judy Mathias
February 22, 2016
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Proper packaging ensures integrity of sterilization

Sterilization packaging is considered a medical device and thus it must undergo validation testing before being used in healthcare facilities. To ensure proper packaging that will maintain the integrity of sterilization, consult the packaging manufacturers’ instructions for use (IFU) and follow the sterilization standards and guidelines from the Association for…

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By: OR Manager
February 19, 2016
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Lean tools help staff weed out bioburden pests

At least half the battle in making and sustaining process improvements is getting the entire team on board with a new workflow. One key to getting buy-in from staff is to clarify why changes are needed and what the consequences may be if the new processes aren’t followed. In a…

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By: OR Manager
July 22, 2015
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