Category Archives: Environmental Safety Products in Healthcare

Path03Gen Is Taking a Step In the Right Direction to Reduce Healthcare-Associated Infections (HAI’s)

Amazing research and developments are taking place all across the globe.

In St. Petersburg, Florida there is an organization dedicated in fighting  harmful pathogens and the St. Pete Catalyst’s Journalist Margie Manning had the following to report on the “Green Earth Medical Solutions” technology company:

Green Earth Medical Solutions developed technology that kills germs on the bottom of shoes, which often are overlooked as a source for bacteria, virus and other disease-causing microorganisms.

The company’s PathO3Gen sanitizing stations combine UVC, a type of ultraviolet light, and ozone, to sanitize shoes. Anyone entering a healthcare facility or a critical care area steps on the station and waits for about six seconds. When they step off, 99.9 percent of the deadly pathogens have been eliminated, said chief operating officer Scott Beal.

Healthcare acquired infections, or HAIs, cause about 100,000 deaths every year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. There’s been a lot of attention paid to infection control in healthcare, most of it focused on hand washing and cleaning high-touch surfaces. A 2017 clinical study showed 77 percent of the soles of shoes walking into a hospital contained superbugs such as MRSA and C. difficile, or a combination of the two.

“Initially, clinicians said ‘we don’t operate on the floors, those are not areas of concern,’” Beal said. “But the infection control community and stakeholders have been coming out with more and more published credible studies that say what is tracked in on the floor is getting airborne and aerosolized, and makes it to high-touch areas, which then cause HAIs.”

Reducing pathogens tracked in by shoes also increases the efficacy of other sanitizing methods, because the building is not being overrun by germs, Beal said.

Hospitals have financial reasons to reduce hospital-acquired infections. Beginning in 2015, federal reimbursements to hospitals were directly affected by their HAI rates.

AdventHealth Connerton, an acute-care specialty hospital in Pasco County, is testing the technology.

“The sanitizing stations allow us to establish new protocols that proactively prevent infections to ensure the best possible outcomes for patients while they’re in our care,” Debi Martoccio, chief operating officer at AdventHealth Connerton, said in a statement.

With any new technology, gaining traction and changing minds are tough to do, Beal said.

“It’s important to have someone the size and scope and reputation of AdventHealth that sees the benefit of what we are trying to accomplish,” he said.

There also are foot sanitizing stations at Cypress Creek Assisted Living in Sun City Center.

There are competitors that use UVC to disinfect shoes, Beal said. None of those companies combine UVC with ozone, a combination initially created by Asher Gil, an Israeli aeronautical engineer. Gil tested his combination of UVC and ozone at University of South Florida. Gil was bought out about three years ago by his partners, who further developed the technology and ran clinical tests. The product went to market in the fourth quarter of 2018.

Those initial owners and one outside investor have provided the capital for Green Earth Medical, now in its second round of fundraising, Beal said.

The company is headquartered in downtown St. Petersburg. It has four full-time employees, and contracts with distributors to market the sanitizing stations. There are about 25 to 30 representatives in the field marketing the product, and the company is in the early stages of talks with more healthcare facilities, as well as clean rooms and labs, Beal said.

The sanitizing stations are the only product right now, but other products are in the process of being patented, he said. He expects to ramp up development on those once the company gains traction.

“We are out trying to market, educate, change perceptions and shift the paradigms that exist around infection controls,” Beal said. “Our goal is to reduce bioburden in every facility that has an immune-compromised population.”

RESOURCE;  https://stpetecatalyst.com/st-pete-tech-company-steps-into-hospital-safety/

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ABC ACTION NEWS INTERVIEW WITH DEBI MORTOCCIO, COO – ADVENTHEALTH  CONNERTON

 

 

Multidisciplinary Program Duke University Medical Center Included UVC Disinfection Technology To Reduce Hospital-Acquired Infections Including CDI

IN THE NEWS………………..

A new manuscript has been accepted by the Journal of the American College of Surgeons which examines C. diff in adult surgical patients. The paper, “Multidisciplinary Approach and Clostridium difficile Infection in Adult Surgical Patients,” discusses the multidisciplinary program that Duke University Medical Center implemented to reduce its C. diff rate.

In 2017, Duke University Medical Center was identified as a “High Outlier” for postoperative C. diff infections in the American College of Surgeons NSQIP semi-annual report with .4 percent cases per year with an increased risk in morbidity and mortality. To address the issue,

“The Department of Surgery initiated a CDI Task Force with representation from Surgery, Infectious Disease, Pharmacy and Performance Services to analyze available data, identify opportunities for improvement and implement strategies to reduce CDI,” the manuscript states.

Strategies to reduce CDI included antimicrobial stewardship optimization, increased use of Tru-D SmartUVC for terminal cleaning of CDI patient rooms, increased hand hygiene and PPE signage as well as monitoring in high-risk CDI areas, improved diagnostic stewardship by an electronic best practice advisory to reduce inappropriate CDI testing, education through surgical grand rounds and routine data feedback via NSQIP and NHSN CDI reports.

Using these strategies, observed rate of C. diff decreased from 1.27 percent in 2016 to 0.91 percent in 2017, a 28 percent decrease.

“Reducing hospital-acquired infections, especially C. diff, takes a multidisciplinary approach and a commitment to numerous infection prevention protocols,” Alice Brewer, MPH, CIC, Director of Clinical Affairs for Tru-D SmartUVC, said.

As one of the strategies, “We reviewed the terminal cleaning policies for rooms occupied by patients with known CDI once they were discharged from the hospital,” the authors stated. “Additionally, the success at eliminating C. difficile through the established terminal cleans was verified through an auditing process. However, the audit demonstrated that there was variability and ineffective cleaning practices within the hospital system. These deficiencies were largely due to lack of Environmental Services staff and staff trained in Tru-D technology.”

The conclusion provided a basis for requesting the hiring and training of additional Environmental Services staff and “expanded training for terminal cleans was used for the Tru-D technology system, a system which uses an ultraviolet light cleaning system to denature the spores of C. difficile. This provided more effective terminal cleaning.”

By training five additional Tru-D operators, the facility went from using Tru-D on 30 percent of C. diff rooms to 100 percent of C. diff rooms. “Appropriately trained Tru-D technicians increased in number following the initiative from two in 2017 to seven in 2019.

This increase in technicians allowed for an increase in terminal cleans by Tru-D Ultraviolet therapy from 30 percent in March 2017 to 100 percent in September 2018,” the manuscript states.

Validated by multiple studies including the only randomized clinical trial on UVC disinfection, Tru-D has been proven to be a chemical-free and environmentally-friendly way of providing thorough room disinfection. UVC is a type of energy that is invisible to the human eye. Its wavelengths are between 200 and 300 nanometers, making them germicidal – meaning they are capable of inactivating microorganisms, such as bacteria, viruses and protozoa.

“It has been proven that increased utilization of Tru-D and UVC disinfection technology correlates to a reduction in hospital-acquired infections, including C. diff,” Brewer said. “By training additional staff in the operation of Tru-D, Duke was able to achieve 100 percent utilization, which helped to contribute to the 28 percent reduction in C. diff infections.”

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Case Study Investigators Utilized a Bleach Product That Showed Significant Reduction In Contamination

 

 

By:Saskia v. Popescu Saskia v. Popescu, MPH, MA, CIC, is a hospital epidemiologist and infection preventionist with Phoenix Children’s Hospital. During her work as an infection preventionist she performed surveillance for infectious diseases, preparedness, and Ebola-response practices. She is currently a PhD candidate in Biodefense at George Mason University where her research focuses on the role of infection prevention in facilitating global health security efforts. She is certified in Infection Control.

Clostridium difficile (C diff) infections are pretty much a nightmare for infection preventionists. They cause horrible illness in patients and the spore is environmentally hardy, which makes disinfection efforts extremely challenging. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that, in the United States, half a million cases of C diff occur every year, and roughly 15,000 people die due to the infection. As a result of the severity of these infections and the challenges for infection control, it’s not surprising that surveillance and reporting is required not only by many state laws, but also reimbursement regulations through the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). All of these factors make C diff prevention a major focus for hospitals.

Since the C diff spores are so environmental hardy, cleaning and disinfecting is particularly challenging. Bleach products are required to combat the spread of the spores on surfaces and fomites while soap and water is required for hand hygiene instead of alcohol-based hand sanitizer. These cleaning requirements pose problems though; sometimes bleach can be corrosive on medical equipment if manufacturer guidelines aren’t followed. Moreover, C diff can easily spread if patients aren’t isolated appropriately, if the room isn’t cleaned effectively, if hygiene failures occur, etc. One of the tough aspects of infection control in the face of C diff is the role of the asymptomatic carrier (i.e. the patient who is not experiencing symptoms that would trigger testing and isolation precautions but has the capacity to shed the spores).

A new study in the American Journal of Infection Control sought to address this often undervalued vector for transmission and the true burden of C diff spores in rooms after they were cleaned post-discharge and did not house a C diff patient. Investigators used the Louis Stokes Cleveland Veterans Affairs Medical Center, a 215-bed acute care facility, to test whether cleaning with bleach products in non-C diff rooms would impact contamination.

Prior to their study, daily and discharge cleaning for C diff rooms utilized bleach wipes, while a quaternary ammonium disinfectant was used for non-C diff rooms. Investigators used Clorox Healthcare Fuzion Cleaner, which is a bleach spray that has less corrosive effects. Although cleaning efficacy had previously been measured with fluorescent markets, the team relied on cultures to identify both C diff spore and methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) contamination for this study.

Non-C diff rooms were tested for 3 weeks before the switch to the bleach-spray disinfectant and then, after the swap, tested again after cleaning of the room but before admission of a new patient. Ultimately, the goal was to determine how many rooms had environmental contamination with C diff spores before and after the change in disinfectants.

There were 51 non-C diff rooms tested after the post-discharge cleaning and prior to the switch to the bleach spray, and 39 non-C diff rooms were cultured after switching to the bleach product. The results were pretty astounding and definitely make the case for using bleach-based products in all post-discharge rooms.

Prior to switching products, 24% (12/51) of the rooms had contamination of at least one site (room and/or bathroom) and 10% had MRSA contamination. When cleaning practices were switched to use the bleach spray, the rate of contamination severely dropped—2 of 39 rooms. This trend was statistically significant and also seen in the MRSA contamination.

In this case, the investigators found that by using the bleach-based spray for the post-discharge cleaning of a non-C diff patient’s room, they reduced the contamination from 24% to 5%.

Although the study is limited to a single hospital, it encourages further investigation into general C diff contamination throughout hospitals and whether bleach-based cleaning should be performed upon all discharges, regardless of patient diagnosis with C diff infections.

As C diff continues to grow as a public health and health care concern, the role of environmental contamination will only become more critical. This study sheds light on a new cleaning strategy for hospital-wide disinfecting efforts to reduce microbial burden and C diff contamination. 

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https://www.contagionlive.com/contributor/saskia-v-popescu/2019/02/fighting-c-diff-contamination-with-a-different-cleaning-approach?fbclid=IwAR3YS1CoSTiCyQ-FJ11N2UHWAMmzGUKnCLp7Uy2MxysbtZfAGTQ2EJANILU

Clorox Healthcare® VersaSure™ Cleaner Disinfectant Wipes Introduced

Patented alcohol-free quat technology with the versatility to use throughout healthcare settings with broad-spectrum disinfection

 

 

Clorox Healthcare is proud to announce the latest addition to its industry-leading portfolio of healthcare disinfectants: new Clorox Healthcare® VersaSureCleaner Disinfectant Wipes, an innovative, alcohol-free quat solution versatile enough to use on common healthcare surfaces with the assurance of broad-spectrum disinfection.

Clorox Healthcare® VersaSureCleaner Disinfectant Wipes are Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) registered to kill 44 pathogens, including bacteria, viruses and fungi, in two minutes or less. The unique, low odor, low residue formula features patented technology that enhances quat activity on surfaces to deliver broader efficacy and faster kill times without co-actives. The result is a versatile, one-step cleaner disinfectant wipe with the speed and efficacy healthcare facilities rely on and superior aesthetics, wetness and cleaning power needed for convenient, compliant use facility-wide.

Clorox Healthcare® VersaSureCleaner Disinfectant Wipes’ innovative new formula provides:

  • Speed and Strength Against Key Pathogens: VersaSure is EPA-registered to kill 44 microorganisms, including 14 multi-drug resistant pathogens, in two minutes or less. VersaSure kills influenza viruses, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), measles, mumps and other viruses in 30 seconds1 and kills bacteria and fungi, including methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), Vancomycin resistant Enterococcus faecalis (VRE), Escherichia coli (E. coli), salmonella, mycobacterium bovis (TB) and Candida albicans, in two minutes.
  • Excellent Aesthetics and Cleaning Power: Patented alcohol-free quat technology and innovative wipe design combine to provide excellent aesthetics, wetness and cleaning power. The low residue formula is designed for superior staff and patient comfort with no harsh chemical fumes or odors. Durable, low-linting wipes are textured for greater strength. Excellent wetness provides greater surface coverage compared with competitor quat and quat-alcohol disinfectant wipes and assurance that treated surfaces will remain wet for the full contact time.
  • Convenient, Compatible Use: VersaSure wipes are ready-to-use, fast acting and compatible with a broad range of hard, non-porous surfaces found in healthcare settings. A variety of sizes, including multipurpose wipes in 85 and 150 count canisters and 30 count flat packs, and terminal wipes for everyday cleaning and disinfecting of large spaces, available in 110 count buckets and refill pouches, makes VersaSure convenient for both nurses and environmental services teams to use facility-wide.

“Not all disinfectants are created equal and many don’t have the optimal balance of attributes to meet users’ needs. For example, a conventional quat or alcohol-based product might offer good compatibility, but have limited kill claims or evaporate from surfaces before meeting the required contact time,” says Brian Thompson, department manager – R&D, Clorox Healthcare. “We believe healthcare facilities shouldn’t have to make those trade-offs and with VersaSure, they don’t. Our R&D teams refused to make compromises between efficacy, aesthetics, wetness and cleaning power, and today we are excited to offer a one-step, ‘use everywhere’ wipe with broad-spectrum efficacy healthcare facilities can trust.”

Building the Industry’s Most Innovative, Comprehensive Portfolio of Disinfecting Solutions

In the fight against infections, today’s healthcare facilities need proven solutions to kill a broad range of pathogens, from seasonal threats like influenza and deadly pathogens like Clostridium difficile (C. difficile), to community-associated MRSA and new threats posed by emerging viral pathogens. Clorox Healthcare offers the industry’s most robust portfolio of EPA-registered surface disinfectants in addition to advanced UV technology, as well as cleaning and odor removal products to provide healthcare facilities, nurses and EVS professionals with a comprehensive portfolio of best-in-class solutions to help reduce the risk of infections and keep patients, staff, visitors and the broader community safe.

Clorox Healthcare understands that safeguarding healthcare environments requires advanced and evolving solutions. VersaSure joins products like Clorox Healthcare® Fuzion Cleaner Disinfectant, a new type of bleach that combines disinfecting efficacy against tough-to-kill pathogens like C. difficile spores with broad surface compatibility,

Clorox Healthcare® Bleach Germicidal Wipes and Clorox Healthcare® Hydrogen Peroxide Cleaner Disinfectants in a class of ready-to-use disinfectants that are tough on pathogens and optimized for surface compatibility, aesthetics, ease-of-use and patient and staff comfort to enable broad use, promote compliance and enhance safety facility-wide.

“At Clorox Healthcare, we are constantly innovating and working to expand the depth and breadth of our industry-leading portfolio, both by pushing the envelope with new product development and constantly striving for improvement to ensure that the mainstay surface disinfectants healthcare facilities depend on continue to meet the highest standards of efficacy and evolving needs of real-world healthcare environments,” says Lynda Lurie, director – marketing, Clorox Healthcare. “The expansion of our portfolio with the launch of VersaSure, brings us one step closer to our goal of removing the environment from the infection prevention equation.”

About Clorox Healthcare
Building on a century-long legacy in cleaning and disinfecting, Clorox Healthcare offers a wide range of products to help stop the spread of infection in healthcare facilities. From comprehensive surface disinfection to advanced ultraviolet technology, we are committed to providing efficacious solutions to the healthcare community. For more information, visit www.CloroxHealthcare.com or follow @CloroxHealth on Twitter.

1Kills rotavirus in two minutes.

 

Clorox Healthcare logo (PRNewsFoto/Clorox Professional Products Co.)

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SOURCE Clorox Healthcare

Read more at https://www.thecloroxcompany.com/release/#tHkDJjKXBYteXfXg.99

California Hemet Valley Medical Center Adds UV Technology to Enhance Patient Safety

Hemet Valley Medical Center has implemented innovative ultraviolet technology with the addition of the Clorox Healthcare® Optimum-UV® System. The system helps remove harmful bacteria and pathogens that can jeopardize health, providing patients, visitors and staff with an additional layer of safety and protection.

U.S. Food and Drug Administration Released Notice For Hospital Mattress Safety

Health care facilities everywhere have been ramping up their disinfection practices in order to prevent the spread of infectious diseases. However, when it comes to hospital mattresses, one of the biggest vectors for spreading deadly bugs, efforts are still falling short.

With health care workers using chemicals that are intended for dry surfaces, the mattresses are harboring pathogens such as Clostridium difficile (C. diff), and, as Edmond A. Hooker, MD, DrPH, professor in the Department of Health Administration at Xavier University, pointed out at the 5th Annual International C. diff Awareness & Health Expo, regulatory agencies seem to have “turned a blind eye” to the issue.

Until now.

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently released a notice on how to keep hospital mattress covers safe.

In this notice, the FDA notes safety concerns regarding hospital mattress covers, particularly that over time they can “wear out and allow blood and body fluids to penetrate and get trapped inside mattresses.” They added, “If blood or body fluids from one patient penetrate and get absorbed in a mattress, the fluids can leak out the next time the mattress is used.” If that happens, the next patient runs the risk of coming into contact with these fluids, and thus, becoming infected with pathogens from the bed’s previous occupants.

The FDA reports that this is not the first time they acknowledged these concerns; they released a safety communication in 2013 to make health care workers aware of the issue. However, the problem of contaminated hospital mattresses persists.

“There is no question there has been report after report after report of, ‘We had this outbreak. We killed all these people.’ There was just a report that came out on 18 people who were sick in a French hospital; they were on beds manufactured here in America, and 4 people were killed before they finally realized that it was the mattresses. They took all of the mattresses out of service and stopped the outbreak,” Dr. Hooker told Contagion ® in an exclusive interview.

“There’s a reason that it’s an under reported problem; hospitals don’t want to say, ‘Hey, we just killed a bunch of people. We kill 29,000 people a year with C. difficile infections. Do you hear that? I mean, that’s like crashing a plane every day and we do nothing about it. We just act like it didn’t happen.”

In an effort to address the issue, the FDA has released recommendations based on Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines for environmental infection control in health care facilities; they include:

  1. Develop an inspection plan for all hospital mattresses and mattress covers in the facility. Learn the time of life for all mattresses/mattress covers by checking the manufacturer’s guidelines; follow any other recommendations that the manufacturers list. If you have any additional questions, contact the mattress manufacturer.
  2. Inspect each hospital mattress for visible signs of damage, which can include: cuts, tears, cracks, pinholes, snags, or stains. On a routine basis, remove mattress covers and check the inside. With the cover removed, check the mattress for wet spots, staining, or other signs of damage. Be sure to check all sides of the mattress as well as underneath. You will not be able to effectively inspect the mattress with the cover on.
  3. Remove any mattresses that are damaged, appear worn, or are visibly stained and immediately replace any mattress covers that are damaged.
  4. Maintain your mattresses and mattress covers by cleaning and disinfecting them “according to the manufacturer’s guidelines.” DO NOT stick needles into the hospital mattress through the cover, the FDA stresses.

“The FDA notice about mattress failures is an important first step. However, much more needs to be done. Most failures are not being reported to FDA, and the 700 reports that they have represents an industry-wide problem. Up to one-third of hospital mattresses currently in service in hospitals have failed. Also, the ones that have not failed are not being cleaned,”

Dr. Hooker stressed to Contagion ® in a follow-up interview. “These mattresses quickly get fissures and microscopic cracks that allow bacteria to remain on the surface during terminal cleaning. The next patient is then exposed to those bacteria and gets a hospital-acquired infection. The CDC needs to mandate better cleaning practices nationwide, which they can do.

The CDC needs to also mandate inspection of every mattress after every patient. Damaged mattresses should be removed from service immediately.”

 

To review the article in its entirety, please click on the link below to be re-directed:

http://www.contagionlive.com/news/fda-acknowledges-hospital-mattresses-as-hotbed-for-germs-releases-recommendations

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Announced Methods and Guidance for Evaluating Efficacy of Antimicrobial Products against Clostridium difficile Spores

 

On September 29, 2017, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the availability of two final test method Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) for evaluating the efficacy of antimicrobial products against  Clostridium difficile (C. diff) spores.

EPA also released regulatory guidance for test criteria and pesticide claims for these products, specifically “Methods and Guidance for Testing the Efficacy of Antimicrobial Products Against Spores of Clostridium difficile on Hard Non-Porous Surfaces.”  These test methods and guidance provide a framework for registrants who seek to make a claim for antimicrobial pesticide products to control these spores on hard, non-porous surfaces.

C. diff is an anaerobic, spore-forming bacterium and a  leading hospital-acquired infection.  The spores survive on hard surfaces such as glass, metals, and plastics that are commonly found in health-care settings.

Antimicrobial pesticides are used to reduce the number of spores on environmental surfaces.  Under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA), the registrant of an antimicrobial product with a public health claim is required to submit efficacy data to EPA in support of the product’s registration.

EPA MLB SOP MB-28 describes the test methodology for producing and storing standardized spore suspensions of C. diff based on ASTM E2839, Standard Test Method for Production of C. difficile Spores for Use in Efficacy Evaluation of Antimicrobial Agents (ASTM International).  A spore suspension should be developed and qualified according to EPA MLB SOP MB-28 before an efficacy evaluation can be performed using method EPA MLB SOP MB-31.  EPA MLB SOP MB-31 describes a quantitative method intended for evaluating the sporicidal efficacy of liquid disinfectants against spores of C. diff on inanimate, hard, non-porous surfaces.

EPA solicited comments on the clarity of the test method SOPs and the regulatory guidance in December 2016.  EPA received comments from twelve entities and revised the drafts to incorporate suggested changes.  EPA posted its response to those comments in Docket No. EPA-HQ-OPP-2016-0753-0026.  EPA also is working with ASTM International, a standard-setting organization, on adoption of these test methods as official ASTM standards.

EPA’s response to comments and other documents associated with this action are available in Docket No. EPA-HQ-OPP-2016-0753 at www.regulations.gov

The methods and guidance also are found on EPA’s Antimicrobial Testing Methods & Procedures Developed by EPA’s Microbiology Laboratory webpage, at the Methods tab as Method IDs MB-28 and MB-31, and at the Guidance tab as Sporicidal Claims Against Clostridium difficile.

 

Source:  https://www.natlawreview.com/article/methods-and-guidance-testing-efficacy-antimicrobials-against-spores-clostridium