NewSplash Archive – January 2017

Issue 4 – 1/31
Washington company creates formula that mimics human body’s immunity response
Briotech, Inc. has created a formula that replicates the body’s hypochlorous acid (HOCL), which is part of our internal defense system to fight infection. Company founder Dan Terry hopes to mass produce and distribute the formula at an affordable price.

Surgical robot successfully removes retinal blood clot
For the first time, a doctor at the University Hospitals Leuven in Belgium used a surgical robot to remove blockage from a blood clot causing retinal vein occlusion. Peter Stamans, MD, PhD, injected ocriplasmin through a 0.03-mm needle into the target blood vessel.

More deaths from mad cow disease possible in the UK
Until recently, vCJD has only struck people with a certain genetic makeup; those who make only a specific type of amino acid that makes up protein. This changed when a 36-year-old UK man died in 2016.

VA initiative leads to eight years of decreased MRSA infections
The Department of Veterans Affairs’ Health Administration launched a campaign to reduce hospital-acquired infections (HAIs) of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) that has yielded significant progress. From October 2007 to September 2015, monthly HAI rates have dropped 87% in ICUs, 80.1% in non-ICUs, and 80.9% in spinal cord injury units, indicating that the focused attention on MRSA infections helped motivate healthcare workers to practice better infection prevention and control measures.

Nearly 200 staff and patients potentially exposed to TB at Seattle hospital
A tuberculosis (TB) patient at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle may have come into contact with 150 hospital staff and up to 45 patients. Those who may have come into contact with the patient are undergoing precautionary testing.

Social media, Internet used to forecast disease outbreaks
When epidemiological data is scarce, researchers can use social media and the Internet to reliably forecast infectious disease outbreaks, according to a study led by the School of Public Health at Georgia State University. Mathematical models are used to forecast disease transmission, but they can be difficult to formulate during the early stages of an outbreak, when data is limited.

Central services focus of accreditation surveys
Technicians who pass an accreditation survey demonstrate that their facility provides quality patient care in line with the most current medical standards. One of the main objectives of an accreditation survey is to develop a plan for continuous accreditation survey readiness relating to sterilization and high-level disinfection.

 

Issue 3 – 1/24
Keys to keeping 2017 career resolutions
VAntage Point, the official blog of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, published these tips to keep your career resolutions on track for 2017.

Medical imaging innovator Christine Hendon wins Presidential honor
Assistant professor of electrical engineering at Columbia Engineering, Christine Hendon, recently earned the Presidential Early Career Award (PECASE), which is the highest honor recognizing young scientists and engineers. Her research is in the field of biomedical optics, which does not rely on radiation to produce images.

Germ-zapping robot deployed to combat HAIs
A research team at the Michigan Medical Division of Infectious Diseases will release germ-zapping robots in Detroit hospitals. The effort, supported by the NIH’s Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, is the first to study no-touch disinfection using high-intensity ultraviolet light to protect patients from deadly superbugs.

Researchers discover evidence that bacteria can make prions
Harvard Medical School researchers have found evidence that a protein in the bacterium Clostridium botulinum can make prions. In the study published in the journal Science, researchers concluded that many other bacteria, both harmful and beneficial, may also carry proteins with prion-forming potential.

New APIC webinar coming in February
On February 16, APIC will present the webinar Heroes of APIC: Infection Reduction through IP Team Integration and Patient Safety Culture. Kelley Boston, MPH, CIC, CPHQ, of Methodist Healthcare System will share her expertise in integrating infection prevention teams.

Central services focus of accreditation surveys
Technicians who pass an accreditation survey demonstrate that their facility provides quality patient care in line with the most current medical standards. One of the main objectives of an accreditation survey is to identify published standards and guidelines for safe and effective reprocessing of medical devices.

 

Issue 2 – 1/17
Detroit Medical Center passes new surprise surgical instruments inspection
On January 10, officials at Detroit Medical Center (DMC) announced that the hospital passed a surprise inspection of its sterilization facilities and is no longer in violation of state health code. Inspections at DMC were prompted by a series of articles by The Detroit News describing the hospital system’s decade-long struggle to properly clean surgical instruments.

New diagnostic test 100% accurate in detecting Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease
Researchers from the University of Verona, Italy, led by Gianluigi Zanusso, MD, conducted a study for a new test algorithm for diagnosing Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD). This new test combines testing samples of cerebrospinal fluid and nasal swabbing, and it has “virtually 100%” specificity and sensitivity for detecting sporadic CJD, though it was less accurate in diagnosing genetic forms of the disease.

Researcher treats surgical masks to kill airborne viruses
Hyo-Jick Choi, a professor at the University of Alberta Department of Chemical and Materials engineering, noticed that many people wear surgical masks during outbreaks of influenza and other dangerous viruses. These masks were not designed to prevent the spread of viruses.

IAHCSMM announces Surgical Instrument Inspection Workshop to be held during their 2017 annual conference
Veteran instrument expert Rick Schultz leads this workshop where participants will learn to identify enemies of surgical instruments (improper postoperative care, use of saline, poor water and steam quality, bioburden); and learn inspection points and functionality of hemostats, Kerrison rongeurs, skin hooks, and laparoscopic instruments. Attendees will also learn the importance of separating rings; the difference between rusting and staining; see the sharpness testing standards for standard and tungsten carbide instruments; and learn the differences between instruments from Germany and Pakistan.

Central services focus of accreditation surveys
Technicians who pass an accreditation survey demonstrate that their facility provides quality patient care in line with the most current medical standards. One of the main objectives of an accreditation survey is to discuss The Joint Commission’s National Patient Safety Goals (NPSG).

 

Issue 1 – 1/10
Happy New Year from everyone at Ultra Clean Systems!
A new year brings with it a sense of hope for a fresh start. With this in mind, Ultra Clean Systems is proud to announce the launch of our NewSplash newsletter, where we will keep you informed on healthcare news with an emphasis on sterile processing and infection control.

To combat superbug infections, hospitals turn to disposable scopes
In the wake of superbug infections across the country, some doctors and hospitals are using disposable scopes to help combat the spread of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. With growing evidence that many reusable instruments cannot be cleaned reliably, smaller companies are now offering single-use scopes that sell for $250 or less per piece, compared to $40,000 or more for a conventional, reusable scope.

Soap opera actress succumbs to Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease at 74
Veteran soap opera actress Barbara Tarbuck, best known for her role as Lady Jane Jacks on General Hospital, died Monday, December 26, of human Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD). She was 74.

“Fluorescence-Based Protein Detection” course now accredited for 1 CEU
Recently, IAHCSMM and CBSPD accreditation bodies have certified Ultra Clean Systems’ “Fluorescence-Based Protein Detection” course for one full CEU. This course shows how to test for residual protein on surgical instruments using the ProReveal residual protein-detection system by Synoptics Health.

Central services focus of accreditation surveys
Technicians who pass an accreditation survey demonstrate that their facility provides quality patient care in line with the most current medical standards. One of the main objectives of an accreditation survey is to discuss The Joint Commission’s accreditation process and identify helpful resources for survey preparation.