Disposables & Reusables

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May 2021
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Breathe easier with the right respiratory protection

The COVID-19 pandemic has underscored the importance of respiratory protection in healthcare settings and in the community. Healthcare workers at high risk of infection need the most effective respiratory protection, and not all surgical masks and respirators are alike. Checking for proper fit, donning and doffing correctly, and following manufacturers’…

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By: Judith M. Mathias, MA, RN
March 19, 2021
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Systematic review of N95 respirator reprocessing

Editor's Note This systematic review by researchers from the University of California, Los Angeles, of five decontamination processes for N95 respirators finds ultraviolet germicidal irradiation, moist heat, and microwave generated steam reprocessing to be effective and simple to implement. A total of 42 studies were reviewed. Ultraviolet germicidal irradiation, moist heat,…

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By: Judy Mathias
March 4, 2021
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FDA calls on 25 firms to stop displaying misleading certificates

Editor's Note The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced March 3 that it has asked 25 firms to stop producing and issuing misleading “FDA registration certificates” and FDA logos that create the impression the FDA has approved or authorized their products. The firms include mask, respirator, face shield, and other…

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By: Judy Mathias
March 4, 2021
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Diligence in implant processing will decrease infection risks

Implants are foreign bodies, and they increase the risk of a surgical site infection. Processing implants requires strict adherence to the required steps because implants have sustained contact with sterile tissue. An implant is defined as a device that is placed into a surgically or naturally formed cavity of the…

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By: Susan Klacik, BS, CRCST, ACE, CIS, FCS
February 17, 2021
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Supply chain strategies shift to meet pandemic-induced demands

Resiliency, a term that has cropped up repeatedly during the COVID-19 pandemic, is often considered a key defense against burnout. But it is also important in the context of the healthcare supply chain, says Ed Hisscock, senior vice president of supply chain management at Trinity Health, a 22-state healthcare system…

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By: Elizabeth Wood
January 19, 2021
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Expanding reprocessing programs can yield cost savings

The financial impact of COVID-19 on healthcare providers has been considerable. With experts predicting that half of all US hospitals would be operating in the red by the end of 2020, healthcare leaders have had to seek multiple ways to cut costs. The expansion of single-use medical device (SUD) reprocessing…

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By: OR Manager
January 19, 2021
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New recommendations issued for instrument care and cleaning

New recommendations developed from evidence-based research have been added to AORN’s Guideline for Care and Cleaning of Surgical Instruments. Several of these changes will have an impact on the quality of processing in sterile processing (SP) areas. This latest version, released on October 12, 2020, includes industry changes that have…

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By: Susan Klacik, BS, CRCST, ACE, CIS, FCS
November 17, 2020
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Reprocessing N95 masks with hydrogen peroxide vapor

Editor's Note This study, led by researchers from Memorial Hermann Texas Medical Center, Houston, is the first to use hydrogen peroxide vapor (HPV) technology on a large scale to reprocess N95 masks in a healthcare system. The researchers were able to recapture and reprocess 29,706 N95 masks using HPV, with…

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By: Judy Mathias
October 22, 2020
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Faulty bronchoscope reprocessing raises risks of infection transmission

Preventing infection transmission has been a chief concern of healthcare leaders and staff striving to protect their patients and themselves from SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. The virus poses an insidious threat that includes the possibility of bronchoscopy-associated transmission of COVID-19. Long before the pandemic, epidemiologist and researcher Cori…

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By: Judith M. Mathias, MA, RN
October 21, 2020
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Restoring filtration efficiency after decontamination of used N95 masks

Editor's Note In this study, researchers from India’s Tata Institute of Fundamental Research and Israel’s Technion-IIT discover how to recharge used N95 masks after decontamination to recover their 95% efficiency. Also included is a proof-of-concept construction of a battery-operated smart mask. N95 masks are 95% efficient at filtering out 0.3…

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By: Judy Mathias
September 14, 2020
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