Challenges in Disinfecting Hospital Equipment

In a hospital setting, cleanliness is closely related to patient safety and health. Even more pressing, hospitals are also among the highest-risk facilities for pathogens and infections. Not only do hospital rooms need routine cleaning and disinfection to prevent the buildup of microorganisms, but so does the portable equipment that often travels room to room. Discover some of the challenges of disinfecting hospital equipment and how environmental services teams can overcome these barriers:  

Lack of Standardization

Factors like contact time, frequency and intensity can pose challenges for facilities maintaining a robust disinfection process. The constant flow of equipment can also put a heavy strain on an already busy staff. A heavy workload, plus the element of human variability, can contribute to certain inconsistencies in reporting and program efficacy. 

Hospital administration can lessen this variability by homing in on explicit standards and processes that employees can follow every time. Facilities can also explore supplemental disinfection solutions that use a cloud-based platform to monitor compliance and promote accountability. However, the solution they choose should complement their existing workflow so as to not detract from employees’ other duties.

Difficulty Meeting Regulatory Standards

Between aging infrastructure, staff shortages, and insufficient training, hospital teams may struggle to secure the needed resources for effective disinfection of equipment. Often, it will take a concerted and coordinated effort between multiple departments to ensure that the facility can meet standards. For example, teams can explore engagement tactics like focusing on weekly HCAHP-specific topics to support patient health and safety.

Insufficient Storage Space

Sterilizing equipment is only 50% of the process; the other 50% comes from keeping that equipment sterilized.  This means that hospitals need access to climate-controlled rooms to store equipment when not in use. Given that they only have a finite amount of room, hospitals and other medical facilities must figure out how to best optimize their space and workflows. It takes a close inspection of the layout and throughput to come up with the best plan. Opting into a workflow assessment with a trusted partner can be a great way to get a new perspective on equipment processing. 

Outdated Sterilization/Disinfection Equipment

Hospitals may be hesitant to update their disinfection equipment because of the extensive training required for their staff. However, while older sterilization equipment might be familiar, it will eventually break down and need to be replaced. New equipment, on the other hand, is usually more durable and energy-efficient, which means the hospital can save on energy bills.

Hospitals can minimize training for new disinfection equipment by choosing a technology with an intuitive interface, like the UVenclosure. Not only does this adjunct solution require little training, but its user-friendly design allows employees to operate it with ease and speed throughout their workday.

While hospitals are busy places with professionals working around the clock, these facilities can still continuously improve the standard of cleanliness. Tools like sterilization equipment and software can empower them to take control of their disinfection workflow and produce consistent results that their patients and staff can count on.

We’re here to help. Visit our Solutions page to learn how the UVconcepts Technology Suite can support, supplement, and improve your disinfection workflow. 

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