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NewSplash Archive – July 2021

Issue 30 – July 28, 2021

Immediate-Use Steam Sterilization Happens in a Flash by Rebecca Kinney
What constitutes best practice when it comes to immediate-use steam sterilization (IUSS)?

Immediate-use steam sterilization, formerly called flash sterilization, is described as “the shortest possible time from the item being removed from the sterilizer to the aseptic transfer onto the sterile field.” These items are not intended to be stored for future use. We must take into consideration all the guidelines and rules that support this method of sterilization that is often overused in our industry. The ultimate goal for all of us in the healthcare industry is to prevent healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) and surgical site infections, and to keep our patients safe. In this article, we will cover when the name changed, the three documents needed to thoroughly identify safety needs, how the standards came to be, and how to calculate IUSS in your own facility.

Health officials say superbug fungus spreading in two cities
Health officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) confirmed reports of superbug outbreaks in a Washington, D.C., nursing home and two hospitals in the Dallas area. Several patients had fungal infections that were immune to medications.

BioNTech plans to develop mRNA-based malaria vaccine
BioNTech announced the launch of its malaria project, which aims to develop a well-tolerated and highly effective malaria vaccine and implement sustainable vaccine supply solutions on the African continent.

Magnetic device used to shrink glioblastoma tumor
Researchers at Houston Methodist Neurological Institute used a helmet that generates a noninvasive oscillating magnetic field to reduce a deadly glioblastoma tumor by more than one third.

COVID-19 surge will peak in mid-October, new model predicts
The nationwide surge in COVID-19 cases will accelerate through the summer and autumn before peaking in mid-October, according to projections shared July 21 by the COVID-19 Scenario Modeling Hub, a consortium of researchers helping the CDC track the pandemic’s trajectory.

2021 IAHCSMM Conference & Expo
IAHCSMM has announced details for the 2021 IAHCSMM Annual Conference & Expo in Columbus, Ohio. Because of the pandemic, IAHCSMM is offering attendees the choice to attend the conference in person or virtually.

Beyond Clean Season 13
In this episode, labor statistician and economist Ron Hetrick, director of staffing products and data at Emsi, discusses the difficulty in finding and retaining qualified technicians to staff sterile processing departments. Be sure to tune in to this episode.


Issue 29 – July 20, 2021

Two Steps Forward, One Step Back: Are We Approaching a Crossroads or a Precipice? by Mike Mackenzie
As we quietly rang in the new year and put the catastrophe that was 2020 behind us, 2021 greeted us with hope as the newly developed COVID-19 vaccines started to become available to the wider public. As more groups of people became vaccinated, infection rates began to fall and restrictions were lifted, enabling people to get back to some semblance of normalcy.

DNA origami nanostructure traps viruses
While there are antibiotics to treat dangerous bacterial infections, there are few antidotes available to treat acute viral infections. Vaccines can prevent some infections, but vaccine development is a long, arduous process.

Researchers establish novel approach for developing new antibiotics
Researchers at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) have developed a novel method for producing new antibiotics to combat resistant bacteria. Through an approach that would target bacteria with an antibiotic that is masked by a prodrug, which the bacteria would themselves remove, the researchers identified a method that would allow for development of new, effective antibiotics that could overcome issues of resistance.

AORN Global Surgical Conference & Expo
AORN presents the 2021 Global Surgical Conference & Expo August 7–10 in Orlando, FL. The conference offers more than 200 continuing education contact hours in many learning options, formats, and tracks; industry-leading speakers; and an expo hall with exhibits, product demos, interactive simulations, and more.

IAHCSMM to change association name
As we covered in NewSplash Volume 5, Issue 20, IAHCSMM’s board of directors recently put forth a strategic plan for 2021–2023, part of which focused on the association’s current name and how it reflects the profession. The board determined a new name was needed that better reflects the profession and how sterile processing affects quality care, and they determined Healthcare Sterile Processing Association (HSPC) clarifies and better represents the profession. 

2021 IAHCSMM Conference & Expo
IAHCSMM has announced details for the 2021 IAHCSMM Annual Conference & Expo in Columbus, Ohio. Because of the pandemic, IAHCSMM is offering attendees the choice to attend the conference in person or virtually.

Beyond Clean Season 13
This episode’s guest is Matthew Peskett, managing director of Peskett Solutions Ltd and cohost of the Deconversations podcast. Matthew discusses his experiences working in the CSSD industry in 1980’s London, sharing his favorite memories, talking about how the industry has changed in the ensuing decades, and explaining what the next generation of sterile processing professionals can learn from the past.


Issue 28 – July 13, 2021

Everyone and No One at All: The Real Value and Opportunity of Technicians Who Organize by Hank Balch
What happens when you get angry about something that happens at work? Maybe one of your co-workers gets injured in decontamination from a sharp that should have been removed in the operating room. Maybe you still don’t have a solution for the chemical rashes that keep showing up on technician’s arms after using your enzymatic cleaners. Perhaps you found out how little you get paid compared to the coffee shop across the street. What’s the first thing you do in that situation?

Delta variant of COVID-19 far more contagious, grows more rapidly
A new study by researchers at Guangdong Provincial Center for Disease Control and Prevention found that the COVID-19 delta variant is the most contagious variant worldwide and spreads approximately 225% faster than the original form of the virus. The study found that the delta variant grows more rapidly in respiratory tracts and to higher levels.

CDC and FDA issue joint statement on vaccine boosters
Americans 12 years of age and older have access to highly effective vaccines against COVID-19. Those who are fully vaccinated are protected from severe disease, while those who are not vaccinated are at risk of severe disease and death.

Plant-based diet combined with a healthy microbiome may protect against multiple sclerosis
A new University of Iowa study suggests that metabolism of plant-based dietary substances by specific gut bacteria, which are lacking in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS), may provide protection against the disease.

Moderna announces first participant dosed in Phase 1/2 study of its quadrivalent seasonal flu mRNA vaccine
Moderna announced the first participants have been dosed in the Phase 1/2 study of mRNA-1010, the company’s quadrivalent seasonal influenza mRNA vaccine candidate.

2021 IAHCSMM Conference & Expo
IAHCSMM has announced details for the 2021 IAHCSMM Annual Conference & Expo in Columbus, Ohio. Because of the pandemic, IAHCSMM is offering attendees the choice to attend the conference in person or virtually.

Beyond Clean Season 13
David Kelman, P.E., president of Kelman & Company Consulting, discusses surgical instrument inventories, budgets, and financial conversations that regularly come up in sterile processing departments. Tune in to hear David address the common questions and challenges we get from administrators, physicians, and manufacturers around how we manage both owned and loaned surgical instruments for our hospitals.


Issue 27 – July 7, 2021

Safety Can’t Be Rushed by Mary Olivera
The task of reprocessing surgical instruments and specialized medical devices requires an intense series of steps that have no room for mistakes or shortcuts. Many specialized devices have multiple components that require disassembly for proper cleaning. Some need specific equipment and time to perform the cleaning process correctly; if the steps are not meticulously followed, cross-contamination can be detrimental to patients. Regulatory, governmental, and accrediting agencies have published guidelines to assist sterile processing (SP) professionals with policies and procedures that protect and ensure patient safety. The COVID-19 pandemic demonstrated that simple cleaning and disinfecting principles could prove effective in eradicating a worldwide virus.

Researchers design face mask that can detect COVID-19
Researchers from MIT and Harvard have designed a novel face mask that can detect COVID-19 in the user’s breath within about 90 minutes. The button-activated mask displays the results on the inside of the mask to protect the user’s privacy.

Harnessing AI to discover new drugs inspired by nature
Nature has a vast store of medicinal substances. “Over 50% of all drugs today are inspired by nature,” says Gisbert Schneider, Professor of Computer-​Assisted Drug Design at ETH Zurich.

Investigational malaria vaccine gives strong, lasting protection
Two U.S. Phase 1 clinical trials of a novel candidate malaria vaccine have found that the regimen conferred unprecedentedly high levels of durable protection when volunteers were later exposed to disease-causing malaria parasites. The vaccine combines live parasites with either of two widely used antimalarial drugs—an approach termed chemoprophylaxis vaccination.

APIC honors 2021 Heroes of Infection Prevention
The Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC) announced the recipients of the Heroes of Infection Prevention Award, which honors infection preventionists who have successfully helped to reduce infection, raise awareness, and improve the health and well-being of patients, healthcare workers, and the public.

Success in reversing dementia in mice sets the stage for human clinical trials
Researchers have identified a new treatment candidate that appears to not only halt neurodegenerative symptoms in mouse models of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, but also reverse the effects of the disorders.

2021 IAHCSMM Conference & Expo
IAHCSMM has announced details for the 2021 IAHCSMM Annual Conference & Expo in Columbus, Ohio. Because of the pandemic, IAHCSMM is offering attendees the choice to attend the conference in person or virtually.

Beyond Clean Season 13
Season 13 kicks off with a conversation with Brian Dolan, MHSA, CMRP, CRCST, CVAHP, LLSGB, vice president resource management at Bayhealth Medical System and the Healthcare Purchasing News CS/SPD Department of the Year award winner for 2021. Brian discusses cultivating a department of happy high performers, engaging leaders, and building trust among your team.