Sterilization & Disinfection

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October 2018
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Joint Commission refines scoring on HLD, sterilization

Editor's Note The Joint Commission on September 5 announced it has refined its scoring for high-level disinfection (HLD) and sterilization to focus on process steps that post the highest risk to patients if they fail. The new scoring revisions apply to: soiled instruments enzymatic solution transportation of instruments instruments in…

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By: Judy Mathias
September 6, 2018
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Top 10 Patient Safety Concerns for 2018

As healthcare strives to become an industry of high-reliability organizations, identifying problems proactively is key. ECRI Institute’s annual Top 10 Patient Safety Concerns for Healthcare Organizations list highlights looming patient safety challenges and offers resources for addressing them. In selecting this year’s list, ECRI Institute relied on data regarding events…

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By: ECRI
August 21, 2018
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Validate and verify medical devices to ensure safety

Sometimes surgeons ask to have nonmedical devices sterilized, such as spoons, hockey pucks, and fish hooks. Healthcare staff may want to accommodate their requests, but there are times when they cannot do so. A central service (CS) should only sterilize medical devices that have undergone validation testing, which demonstrates that…

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By: Susan Klacik, BS, CRCST, CHL, CIS, ACE, FCS
August 21, 2018
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Effectiveness of reprocessing reusable flexible bronchoscopes

Editor's Note In a study on the effectiveness of reprocessing flexible bronchoscopes presented June 14 by Ofstead and Associates at the Association for Professionals in Infection Control’s annual conference in Minneapolis, the majority of bronchoscopes were found to be contaminated and damaged even when cleaned and high-level disinfected according to…

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By: Judy Mathias
June 20, 2018
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Endoscope fluid, contaminants linger after faulty drying

What does it take to get endoscopes dry? That is the question that prompted a new study on endoscope drying effectiveness by Ofstead & Associates (St Paul, Minnesota). “We asked that question after a study we did 2 years ago found that increasing the automated endoscope reprocessor [AER] drying cycle…

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By: Judith M. Mathias, MA, RN
June 20, 2018
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San Diego hospital in ‘Immediate Jeopardy’ for dirty surgical equipment

Editor's Note After a routine survey, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) declared “Immediate Jeopardy” at UC San Diego’s Hillcrest campus because of cleaning issues with its surgical equipment, the June 8 10News reports. A CDPH report says that deficiencies found included: trays of surgical equipment with brown stains…

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By: Judy Mathias
June 12, 2018
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AAMI releases new standard on sterilization quality management

The Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI) has released a sterilization standard on quality management for central service (CS) sterile processing. The new standard, ANSI/AAMI ST90: 2017 Processing of Health Care Products: Quality Management Systems for Processing in Health Care Facilities, provides guidelines to support quality management systems…

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By: Susan Klacik, BS, CRCST, CHL, CIS, ACE, FCS
May 18, 2018
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Study: Residual moisture, waterborne pathogens found inside flexible endoscopes

Editor's Note Inadequate reprocessing and insufficient drying contributed to retained fluid and contamination found inside flexible endoscopes in this study led by noted epidemiologist Cori L. Ofstead. Of 45 endoscopes analyzed at 3 hospitals, fluid was detected in 49%, and the prevalence of moisture varied significantly by site (5%, 83%,…

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By: Judy Mathias
April 19, 2018
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FDA issues letter to healthcare providers on risks of endoscope connectors

Editor's Note The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on April 18 alerted healthcare providers and facilities about the risk of cross-contamination with 24-hour, multipatient use connectors used in gastrointestinal (GI) endoscopy. Endoscope connectors are small accessories used to connect the auxiliary water channel to a water source and irrigation tubing.…

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By: Judy Mathias
April 19, 2018
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FDA: System 83 Plus AERs complete validation testing

Editor's Note The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on April 10 notified healthcare facilities that Custom Ultrasonics (Ivyland, Pennsylvania) has completed validation testing of the System 83 Plus (ie, System 83 Plus, System 83 Plus 2, and System 83 Plus 9) automated endoscope reprocessors (AERs) with specific duodenoscopes. The FDA…

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By: Judy Mathias
April 11, 2018
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