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NewSplash Archive – May 2021

Issue 21 – 5/25

Walk a Mile in Their Shoes by Rebecca Kinney
“The admonition to walk a mile in someone else’s shoes means before judging someone, you must understand his experiences, challenges, thought processes, etc. The full idiom is: Before you judge a man, walk a mile in his shoes. In effect, it is a reminder to practice empathy.”

Working in sterile processing (SP) is a not easy job. There is no glamorous way to spin it. Sometimes we wish people would understand how we feel holed up in the hospital’s basement or in a windowless department that most key and clinical decision-makers couldn’t locate if you paid them. Without us, surgery couldn’t happen, and surgery is the primary revenue-generating engine of most hospitals. We might feel that certain professional courtesies are due to us. Yet, I challenge you to take a step back and walk in the shoes of other roles that are part of this revenue-generating machine. 

COVID-19 testing method gives results within one second
Researchers from the University of Florida and Taiwan’s National Chiao Tung University report a rapid and sensitive testing method for COVID-19 biomarkers.

Mild COVID-19 induces lasting antibody protection
Months after recovering from mild cases of COVID-19, people still have immune cells in their body pumping out antibodies against the virus that causes COVID-19, according to a study from researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. Such cells could persist for a lifetime, churning out antibodies all the while.

Moderna says its COVID-19 vaccine works in children as young as 12
Moderna, Inc. announced that the Phase 2/3 study of its COVID-19 vaccine in adolescents has met its primary immunogenicity endpoint, successfully bridging immune responses to the adult vaccination. In the study, no cases of COVID-19 were observed in participants who had received two doses of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine using the primary definition.

New technology makes tumor eliminate itself
Scientists at the University of Zurich have modified a common respiratory virus, called adenovirus, to act like a Trojan horse to deliver genes for cancer therapeutics directly into tumor cells. Unlike chemotherapy or radiotherapy, this approach does no harm to normal healthy cells.

New antimicrobial surface reduces bacteria build-up on medical instruments
Monash University researchers have engineered new antimicrobial surfaces that can significantly reduce the formation of bacteria on medical instruments, such as urinary catheters, and reduce the risk of patient infection while in hospital.

Registration now open for APIC 2021 Annual Conference
Registration is now open for the APIC 2021 Annual Conference in Austin, Texas, June 28–30. For those who are unable or unwilling to attend the live conference, there is the option to register for a virtual conference.

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 12
This episode’s guest is Adam Okada, clinical manager at Beyond Clean and founder of Sterile Education. Adam discusses his insights around training the future of sterile processing, externships, job hunting, and best practices for hosting students in your sterile processing department.

 

Issue 20 – 5/18

Lead with Vision by Marjorie Wall
“Nothing ever changes.” “I’m tired of complaining; no one ever listens.” “We’ve been dealing with the same problems for 20 years. Why can’t sterile processing get it together?”

Sterile processing leaders often struggle with operational needs and the daily fires. This limits their ability to drive change, improvement, and efficiency. The needs in the moment far outweigh the needs of the future. With the sterile processing leader struggling with the day-to-day needs and stress, the leader and team cannot see a vision of the future where trays flow through their walls without a backlog, missing instruments, instrument trays missing in action, and operating room complaints.

IAHCSMM board recommends name change
IAHCSMM’s board of directors recently completed a new strategic plan for 2021–2023, and part of that plan focused on the current name of the association and how it reflects the profession.

Scientists rewrite the genesis of mosquito-borne viruses
Better designed vaccines for insect-spread viruses like dengue and Zika are likely after researchers discovered models of immature flavivirus particles were originally misinterpreted. Researchers from The University of Queensland and Monash University have now determined the first complete 3D molecular structure of the immature flavivirus, revealing an unexpected organization.

UV-free antimicrobial LEDs proven to kill viruses
Vyv announced the recent independent test results confirming efficacy of its antimicrobial light technology (405nm) for killing viruses. Numerous studies have proven the effectiveness of Vyv’s visible light against bacteria, mold, fungi, and yeast.

Evidence suggests bubonic plague had long-term effect on human immunity genes
Scientists examining the remains of 36 bubonic plague victims from a 16th century mass grave in Germany have found the first evidence that evolutionary adaptive processes, driven by the disease, may have conferred immunity on later generations of people from the region.

Registration now open for APIC 2021 Annual Conference
Registration is now open for the APIC 2021 Annual Conference in Austin, Texas, June 28–30. For those who are unable or unwilling to attend the live conference, there is the option to register for a virtual conference.

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 12
This week’s guests are Laura Clark, Amy Davis, and Kristi Clark from Minidoka Memorial Hospital in Rupert, Idaho. They discuss the collaboration with their sterile processing team to reach their goal of a 0% infection rate in the operating room.

 

Issue 19 – 5/11

On-site Versus Off-site: The Battle for the Future of Sterile Processing Services by Hank Balch
There are few questions as hotly debated today than the question of “where?” Where should sterile processing departments be located? Where do we find the potential for the greatest efficiencies? Where should hospitals be looking to invest (in real estate) and where should construction planners recommend these instrument-reprocessing engines be built?

This is not just a national debate. Off-site reprocessing has been going on in Europe for more than a decade now, if not longer. As with most comparisons, we need to be careful because the US is more than twice the size of the EU, with half as many people. In terms of population density, the EU has around 111 people per square kilometer, and the US only around 35. Just because something like off-site reprocessing works elsewhere doesn’t prove that it will have the same success somewhere else.

Pfizer and BioNTech begin license application for FDA approval of COVID-19 vaccine
Pfizer and BioNTech announced the initiation of a Biologics License Application (BLA) with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for approval of their mRNA vaccine to prevent COVID-19 in individuals 16 years of age and older. Data to support the BLA will be submitted by the companies to the FDA on a rolling basis over the coming weeks, with a request for Priority Review.

Georgia Tech and Emory researchers use ultrasound to develop delivery system for potent RNA drugs
RNA-based drugs have the potential to change the standard of care for many diseases, making personalized medicine a reality. This rapidly expanding class of therapeutics are cost-effective, fairly easy to manufacture, and able to go where no drug has gone before, reaching previously undruggable pathways. Mostly.

New finding suggests cognitive problems caused by repeat mild head hits could be treated
A neurologic pathway by which nondamaging but high-frequency brain impact blunts normal brain function and causes long-term problems with learning and memory has been identified. The finding suggests that tailored drug therapy can be designed and developed to reactivate and normalize cognitive function, say neuroscientists at Georgetown University Medical Center.

Robotic surgery outlook boosted by hospital spending pickup in Q1
Hospital spending on capital equipment is on an upswing, signaling a stronger outlook for surgical procedures guided by robotic systems in the year ahead, medtech executives said on their first-quarter earnings calls.

Scientists discover how to trick cancer cells to consume toxic drugs
Getting enough anticancer drugs into a tumor is often difficult, and a potential strategy to overcome this challenge involves binding the medications to albumin, the most abundant protein in blood. New research led by a team at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) points to a promising strategy to boost tumors’ intake of cancer drugs, thereby increasing the effectiveness of chemotherapy treatments.

Registration now open for APIC 2021 Annual Conference
Registration is now open for the APIC 2021 Annual Conference in Austin, Texas, June 28–30. For those who are unable or unwilling to attend the live conference, there is the option to register for a virtual conference.

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 12
Warren Nist, CSSD consultant, Evolved Sterile Processing Consulting LLC and IAHCSMM Foundation board member, discusses his extensive career as an interim leader, consultant, and sterile processing advocate. Tune in to hear Warren share his insights on the challenges facing interim managers when they first set foot in a new hospital and his recommendations for what makes a high-performing consultative resource for sterile processing teams.

 

Issue 18 – 5/4

Adopting a Mental Framework to Speak Up for Patient Safety by Lisa McKown, DrPH Student, MBA, CRCST, CIS, CHL, MBTI
Have you experienced a hesitancy to speak up when encountering a patient safety issue? If so, you are not alone. Most healthcare workers can relate to the unsettling feeling of knowing something is not quite right and being unsure if they should intervene. When the reason for hesitancy is associated with a fear of a personal loss, such as the lack of leadership support, risk of retaliation, or isolation from peers, it’s all too easy to remain silent rather than draw unwanted negative attention. How do we reconcile the knowledge that every year hundreds of thousands of patients die from preventable medical errors, and that many instances could be intercepted with better communication? Regardless of organizational limitations, how can a frontline healthcare worker push past barriers to bring patient safety issues forward? To address these questions, we will evaluate the interplay of authenticity, character, and moral courage as relationships within a mental framework that influence our ability to speak up for patient safety.

Fully vaccinated adults 65 and older are 94% less likely to be hospitalized with COVID-19
Both mRNA COVID-19 vaccines (Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna) authorized and recommended in the United States protect against COVID-19-related hospitalization among adults 65 years and older, according to a new CDC assessment that finds fully vaccinated adults 65 years and older were 94% less likely to be hospitalized with COVID-19 than people of the same age who were not vaccinated. People 65 and older who were partially vaccinated were 64% less likely to be hospitalized with COVID-19 than people who were not vaccinated.

Mini 3D brain models could speed up search for MS treatments
Tiny 3-D models that mimic vital aspects of the human nervous system have been developed in a step that could accelerate drug research for neurological conditions such as multiple sclerosis (MS).

Antibiotic of last resort pops bacterial like balloons
Scientists have revealed how an antibiotic of last resort kills bacteria. The findings, from Imperial College London and the University of Texas, may also reveal a potential way to make the antibiotic more powerful.

Olympus launches new line of five single-use bronchoscopes
Olympus announced the addition to its U.S. bronchoscopy portfolio of the 510(k)-cleared H-SteriScope Single-Use Bronchoscopes, a line of five premium endoscopes for use in advanced diagnostic and therapeutic procedures. The introduction of the H-SteriScope portfolio has been a collaboration between Veran Medical Technologies, Inc., a wholly owned Olympus subsidiary, and Hunan Vathin Medical Instrument Co., Ltd. 

Registration now open for APIC 2021 Annual Conference
Registration is now open for the APIC 2021 Annual Conference in Austin, Texas, June 28–30. For those who are unable or unwilling to attend the live conference, there is the option to register for a virtual conference.

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 12
Workplace drama can ripple throughout departments and up through leadership, and sterile processing is not immune. Dina Budacan, central sterile processing manager and decontamination lead for one of Ireland’s leading private healthcare facilities, discusses the real frustrations in SP, how to not be annoyed, and the importance of keeping your cool.