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I wanted to ask the group what everyone is doing for their items that cannot go through the Washer/Disinfector. I am looking at IFU’s for our items and most do not have any steps on doing an alcohol or quat low level disinfection process. If there are any disinfection steps, they really only describe a HLD one. How are we covering ourselves if we vary from the IFU?
Also wondering how people are handling the inspection and assembly station for these types of items. Are they separate from your other assembly areas? Do staff wear gloves to handle the items? Are there any additional station cleaning protocols?
J.Z., Specialty Educator, Sterile Processing
Always follow the IFU's! Using products (chemical disinfectants) that are not approved can have unintended consequences and may damage devices and/or risk potential harm to the patient. Knowing what the device is made of can help to determine whether it can be disinfected with some type of wipe. Most chemical disinfectants require rinsing, preferably with distilled or DI water. It's a cumbersome process, no doubt.
One facility that I am familiar with has a separate portion of the counter at the pass-thru window for items that have not been disinfected. These items are only handled by staff wearing gloves. When preparing to wrap or package these items, the wrappers or container are prepared, the staff person puts on a (usually just one) clean glove, retrieves the item from the pass-thru window and places it directly on the inner wrapper or in position in the tray, removes the glove and completes wrapping or packaging the item without touching it further. In this way, the table is not affected in any way, and therefore does not require decontamination. The whole process works quite smoothly and takes almost as long to describe as it does to perform.
Any other comments?