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NewSplash Archive – July 2019

Issue 31 – 7/30

What is a table-mounted retractor?
A: Table-mounted retractors are secured to the surgical table to hold various types of retractor systems and instruments. Examples are retractor systems to hold retractor blades and malleable retractor blades. (p. 121)

Q: How do cardiac instruments become magnetized? (See next issue.)

Why Not Work When You Want? How to Totally Change the Way We Schedule Sterile Processing Technicians by Hank Balch
In 2019, there’s no longer any (good) reason for why we are still making staffing schedules the way we did in 1979. Five days a week? Says who? Twelve-hour shifts? Why not? The sterile processing industry is primed for a complete disruption in how we handle staffing our departments and now the technology exists to make it a reality. First, let’s take a look at the problem, then a few of the results, and finally a sneak peek at a completely new way of doing things.

Microfluidics device helps diagnose sepsis within 30 minutes
MIT researchers have designed a novel sensor that could dramatically accelerate the process of diagnosing sepsis. Sepsis occurs when the body’s immune response to infection triggers an inflammation chain reaction throughout the body, leading to high heart rate, high fever, shortness of breath, and more.

Discovery of new liver cell could eliminate need for liver transplants
Researchers at King’s College London have used single-cell RNA sequencing to identify a new type of cell that may be able to regenerate liver tissue. The cell, called hepatobiliary hybrid progenitor (HHyP) forms during our early development in the womb, and small quantities still persist in adults.

Infrared chemical imaging technology can offer precise cancer diagnosis
According to the American Cancer Society, prostate cancer is the second most common cancer among American men, placing it behind only skin cancer. Prostate cancer is difficult to diagnose and often leads to unnecessary surgeries.

MED-EL’s cochlear implant is first FDA-approved device for single-sided deafness and asymmetric hearing loss
MED-EL USA announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the company’s cochlear implant system for single-sided deafness (SSD) and asymmetric hearing loss (AHL). This is the first and only time that cochlear implants have been approved for these indications in the United States.

IAHCSMM announces call for presentations
In preparing for the 2020 Annual Conference & Expo, April 25–29, in Chicago, IAHCSMM has announced a call for presentations that showcase new ideas and methods of improvement in the central service and sterile processing field. All presentation submissions must be received no later than 11:59 p.m. CST, Wednesday, July 31, 2019.

OR Today Live registration is open
Register now for OR Today Live, August 18–20, in Las Vegas. The conference features industry-leading speakers covering the latest in clinical, management, and CS/SPD; the opportunity to earn up to 16 CEs; exhibit hall with the latest technology, products, and services; and more.

New Beyond Clean episode now available
This week’s guest on Beyond Clean is Jeremy Gibson-Roark, certification surveyor with DNV GL. The topic is how departments are implementing quality management programs around the country and the brand new department-level sterile processing certification available through the DNV GL organization.

Issue 30 – 7/23

[Hemostatic/ring-handled forceps] Should rubber tubing be put on the jaws?
A: NEVER. Putting rubber tubing on the jaws of a hemostat to be used as a tube occluding clamp is dangerous. Tube clamps are designed for this purpose (p. 87)

Q:What is a table-mounted retractor? (See next issue.)

Considering Technological Advancement Purchases? First Step: Create a Multidisciplinary Risk Assessment Committee by Rose Seavey, MBA, BS, RN, CNOR, CRCST, CSPDT
Advancements in healthcare technology are vitally important as new discoveries can improve the quality of patients’ lives and reduce risks or costs to the organization.

Organizations that accredit healthcare facilities, such as the Centers Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and The Joint Commission (TJC) audit healthcare organizations to ensure that their practices and procedures align with the nationally published standards, such as the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI) and the Association of Perioperative Registered Nurses (AORN).

CBD beats resistant strains of gram-positive bacteria
Research conducted at The University of Queensland has shown that CBD is active against gram-positive bacteria, such as Staphylococcus aureus and Streptococcus pneumoniae. According to the study, CBD does not lose effectiveness and it is also effective at disrupting biofilms.

State sepsis regulation tied to lower death rates
New York is the first state to mandate sepsis regulation and, as a result, it saw death rates from sepsis fall faster than expected. State policy requires all New York hospitals to quickly implement certain protocols when sepsis is suspected.

New ambulatory requirement to formalize organizational antimicrobial stewardship goals
Effective January 1, 2020, new antimicrobial stewardship requirements will apply to ambulatory healthcare organizations accredited by The Joint Commission that routinely prescribe antimicrobial medications. This includes organizations providing medical or dental services, episodic care, occupational and worksite health, urgent and immediate care, and convenient care services.

IAHCSMM announces call for presentations
In preparing for the 2020 Annual Conference & Expo, April 25–29, in Chicago, IAHCSMM has announced a call for presentations that showcase new ideas and methods of improvement in the central service and sterile processing field. All presentation submissions must be received no later than 11:59 p.m. CST, Wednesday, July 31, 2019.

OR Today hosts Strategies for Reduction of Surgical Site Infections webinar
On Thursday, July 25, at 2:00 ET, OR Today will host a webinar about strategies to reduce surgical site infections. The 60-minute prerecorded webinar is presented by Melanie A. Burton, BSN, RN, CNOR, MLSO.

OR Today Live registration is open
Register now for OR Today Live, August 18–20, in Las Vegas. The conference features industry-leading speakers covering the latest in clinical, management, and CS/SPD; the opportunity to earn up to 16 CEs; exhibit hall with the latest technology, products, and services; and more.

New Beyond Clean episode now available
This week’s guest on Beyond Clean is Peggy Spitzer, clinical education manager at Certol International. The conversation revolves around manufacturer instructions for use (IFUs) and safety data sheets (SDSs) related to chemical safety in the SPD. They discuss finding safety data sheets, how to read them, how they are updated, and more. Take the exam for CE credit.

Issue 29 – 7/16

How are laparoscopic scissors tested for sharpness?
A: Unless stated differently in the instructions for use (IFU), laparoscopic scissors are tested on one thickness of gift wrap tissue paper or yellow scissor test material. (p. 68)

Q: [Hemostatic/ring-handled forceps] Should rubber tubing be put on the jaws? (See next issue.)

It’s Time to Call It: Unleashing the Power of the Conference Call for Sterile Processing Improvement by Hank Balch

How many times have you found yourself in the midst of one of those “I can’t believe this is happening” situations in your sterile processing department? Perhaps the department is starting to flood because of an incoming hurricane in your costal region. Or maybe the boiler at your steam plant just went kaput at 10 a.m. in the middle of a heavy surgical schedule.

The possibility of these types of sterile processing experiences is more likely than you may think. Depending on your level of experience or access to industry expertise within your facility, the key decision-making responsibility may land squarely on your shoulders. What would you do next? Suppose you don’t know. Where would you go to find answers you can trust?

Researchers developing individualized, 3D-printed surgical robots
Researchers at the Australian Centre for Robotic Vision are developing miniaturized surgical robots that are uniquely matched to an individual patient’s anatomy. The first prototype, called SnakeBot, was designed for knee arthroscopy.

FDA-cleared microbicidal liquid kills drug-resistant superbug Candida auris
Healthcare workers have a new ally in the battle against the deadly superbug, Candida auris. In an independent laboratory study, DuraDerm, an FDA-cleared microbicidal liquid polymer, killed 99.99% of C. auris fungus.

Access new whitepaper on manufacturers’ maintenance documents and service manuals
Many of the regulatory and accreditation criteria for healthcare facilities relate to decontamination, sterilization and maintenance procedures. The standards often require hospital SPD, BMET, OR, infection control, and other technicians to follow and have easy access to manufacturers’ directives regarding preparing and caring for their devices, equipment, and systems.

OR Today hosts Strategies for Reduction of Surgical Site Infections webinar
On Thursday, July 25, at 2:00 ET, OR Today will host a webinar about strategies to reduce surgical site infections. The 60-minute prerecorded webinar is presented by Melanie A. Burton, BSN, RN, CNOR, MLSO.

OR Today Live registration is open
Register now for OR Today Live, August 18–20, in Las Vegas. The conference features industry-leading speakers covering the latest in clinical, management, and CS/SPD; the opportunity to earn up to 16 CEs; exhibit hall with the latest technology, products, and services; and more.

New Beyond Clean episode now available
This week on Beyond Clean, the hosts speak with Cheron Rojo, clinical education coordinator SPD at Healthmark Industries, about the potential dangers of insulated laparoscopic devices. They discuss insulation testing, the things your team should do every day to protest patients from serious injury or death when it comes to reprocessing insulated surgical instruments, and more. Complete the exam for CE credit.

Issue 28 – 7/9

Can gold handle needle holders go into ultrasonic cleaners?
A: Absolutely. The myth that states “ultrasonic cleaning will make the jaws pop out” is not true; however, if the jaws did pop out in the ultrasonic cleaner, that would be better than if they did so in the patient. (p. 48)

Q: How are laparoscopic scissors tested for sharpness? (See next issue.)

Sterile Processing Technicians and the Art of Appreciation by Sara Freiberg
No one jumps out of bed with excitement each morning because their organization provides dental coverage. While dental coverage is a great benefit and often needed, it is not what motivates employees on a daily basis or keeps them long term. Many articles are written on the various ways companies can retain their employees. A simple Google search on employee retention will yield articles such as “Five Surprising Ways to Retain Employees,” “Four Simple Steps to Get Employees Excited,” and “The Top Three Employee Engagement Drivers.” The list goes on. It may be surprising to learn that while money, benefits, great leadership, and company culture are important to many employees, they are not a key motivator in making employees feel valued. What is a top motivator for an employee? Showing appreciation and showing it often.

Beyond Clean hosts second annual live event at IAHCSMM 2019
At the 2019 IAHCSMM Conference & Expo in Anaheim, Beyond Clean hosted its second annual panel discussion on the topic of sterility assurance. Panelists include Kelly Soto Pacheco from Steris representing biological indicators, Mike Eckenwiler from Getinge representing chemical indicators, and René Vis from Steelco Benelux B.V. representing parametric release. Watch the event and take the quiz for CE credit.

Training lapses may have led to rise in C. diff infections at VA hospital: 5 findings
Failure to adequately train housekeeping staff may have contributed to growing rates of potentially deadly infections at Loma Linda, CA-based Jerry L. Pettis Memorial Veterans Hospital, according to a report released June 18 from the Department of Veterans Affairs Office of Inspector General.

Catheters a big source of infection
According to a University of Michigan study, indwelling devices such as catheters cause roughly 25% of hospital infections, and ongoing efforts to reduce catheter use and misuse haven’t curtailed infection rates as much as healthcare workers would like. The study found that most problems with catheter use stem from poor communication between physicians and nurses.

New bacteria-phobic biomaterial could stop spread of superbugs in hospitals
Researchers at Nottingham University have developed a new biomaterial that stops bacteria from sticking to medical devices, such as catheters, to help fight against superbugs. The researchers hope this new material, called Bactigon, will have a major impact against antimicrobial resistance.

WHO launches new campaign to combat antimicrobial resistance
On June 19, the World Health Organization (WHO) launched a global campaign urging governments to adopt a tool to reduce the spread of antimicrobial resistance, adverse events, and costs.

OR Today Live registration is open
Register now for OR Today Live, August 18–20, in Las Vegas. The conference features industry-leading speakers covering the latest in clinical, management, and CS/SPD; the opportunity to earn up to 16 CEs; exhibit hall with the latest technology, products, and services; and more.

New Beyond Clean episode now available
This week’s guest on Beyond Clean is Densley Coke, sterile processing manager at Northside Forsyth Hospital and adjunct professor of the sterile processing program at Gwinnett Technical College. The topics are collaborating with technical colleges to improve sterile processing, how curriculums are created, and the impact these technical colleges are having on the job market. Be sure to complete the exam for CE credit.

Issue 27 – 7/2

How often should scissors be tested?

A: Scissors should be tested 1 to 2 times per week. The proactive approach is picking 2 days per week as scissor testing days. Using an instrument tracking system will allow the facility to track sharpening frequency. Eventually, a large percentage of scissors will be sharp. (p. 15)

Q: Can gold handle needle holders go into ultrasonic cleaners? (See next issue.)

“I Got It!”​: Why Initiative Makes the Sterile Processing World Go Round by Hank Balch
One of the most annoying sounds I’ve ever heard was the buzzer on the cart washer in my first hospital. Man, that thing sounded like a cricket the size of Godzilla was scratching its legs together—again, and again, and again. But as loud and annoying as the sound was, the buzzer also served as the impetus for one of my first experiences on the importance of sterile processing initiative that I had in my young career.

Beyond Clean hosts second annual live event at IAHCSMM 2019
At the 2019 IAHCSMM Conference & Expo in Anaheim, Beyond Clean hosted its second annual panel discussion on the topic of sterility assurance. Panelists include Kelly Soto Pacheco from Steris representing biological indicators, Mike Eckenwiler from Getinge representing chemical indicators, and René Vis from Steelco Benelux B.V. representing parametric release. Watch the event and take the quiz for CE credit.

Infection rates higher in RA patients following joint surgery
Medpage Today has an article about higher infection rates in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) following joint surgery. According to a nationwide Danish study by René Cordtz and Anders Odgaard, patients with RA had an increased risk of nonsurgical site infection but a lower risk for venous thromboembolism (VTE) following joint replacement surgery.

New biosensor invented to detect stomach cancer-causing bacteria Researchers at Osaka University have invented a new biosensor using graphene—a material consisting of a one-atom-thick layer of carbon—to detect bacteria such as those that attack the stomach lining and that have been linked to stomach cancer. When the bacteria interact with the biosensor, chemical reactions are triggered which are detected by the graphene.

Survey shows Americans aware of antibiotic resistance, but don’t always follow prescription
A recent survey shows that most Americans believe antibiotic resistance is a threat to public health, but 45% say they have used antibiotics improperly. Of those who have improperly used antibiotics, 39% did not finish the course and 16% took them without first speaking with a healthcare provider.

New hydrogel treats, prevents bone infections
Surgery to treat trauma wounds, cancer, and other conditions can lead to bone infections that are difficult to treat and can delay healing. Researchers at the Georgia Institute for Technology have developed a double-duty hydrogel that attacks the bacteria and encourages bone regrowth with a single application containing two active components.

OR Today Live registration is open
Register now for OR Today Live, August 18–20, in Las Vegas. The conference features industry-leading speakers covering the latest in clinical, management, and CS/SPD; the opportunity to earn up to 16 CEs; exhibit hall with the latest technology, products, and services; and more.

New Beyond Clean episode now available
Season 5 of Beyond Clean kicks off with a conversation with Charlie Webb, founder and president at Van der Stähl Scientific, about the intricacies of medical device packaging. You will learn there’s much more to safely packaging instruments than simply inserting them into peel packs and sealing them up. Complete the exam for CE credit.