Don't Run Out of Steam
Articles by M. Dietrich -Please click on the article title to view content
TANCS Thermal Accelerated Nano Crystal Sanitation
EVALUATION OF THE EFFICACY OF STEAM DISINFECTION
OF IN-VIVO HOSPITAL SURFACES
Paolo Uy, Dick Zoutman
Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario, Canada
As Presented by Dr. Zoutman at the CHICA 2010 Conference in Vancouver BC
Introduction: Transmission of MRSA and VRE on hospital surfaces is increasingly recognized. Chemical cleaning methods are time consuming, subject to variability in use, contact time and have the potential for toxicity and ecosystem impacts.
Objective: This study was designed to determine the efficacy of a steam sterilization system in eliminating MRSA and VRE from hospital high touch surface materials.
Methods: High quality dry steam was produced using a SteamKing(R) 1500 commercial steamer with thermal
accelerated nanocrystal sanitation technology (TANCS). 2 cm test discs were machined from tabletop laminate, toilet seat plastic and stainless steel door handles. Discs were sterilized and inoculated with high concentrations of MRSA and VRE cultures prepared in tryptic soy broth. After drying, the test surfaces were exposed to steam using the system’s hose and 4 cm nylon brush for 5 seconds, immediately after which the residual bacterial inoculum was eluted in saline, serially diluted and quantitatively plated in duplicate to allow colony counts. Inoculated but nonsteamed test discs served as controls.
Results: The initial inoculum of MRSA and VRE dried and eluted from the test disc surfaces averaged 1 x106
cfu/disc. After a 5 second steam exposure the test discs revealed a 6 log10 reduction compared to the control
untreated discs for both MRSA and VRE on all three test surface materials. We conclude that steam exposure results in a 6-log reduction of MRSA and VRE on heavily contaminated surface materials used in hospitals quickly and efficiently.
What is TANCS®? Using our proprietary water treatment process, nano crystals are formed within the tap water. When the water is transformed into super-heated steam, the crystals are energized and compromise the function of the microbial cell wall.
INFORMATION REGARDING BEST PRACTICE GUIDELINES AND STEAM VAPOUR CLEANING
In a continued effort to provide the best and most responsible practices to the Healthcare industry, the Provincial Infectious Diseases Advisory Committee (PIDAC) has recently released the Best Practices for Environmental Cleaning for Prevention and Control of Infections. The latest updated document - December 2009, provides guidelines and recommendations for cleaning the environmental surfaces in a healthcare setting. In addition to practices recognized as effective and traditional, this document includes a Section (6.4) on New and Evolving Technologies in an effort to provide those entrusted with the maintenance of facilites with a tool set to most effectively achieve the best results.
With regards to New and Evolving Technolgies, the recommendations concerning implementation can be summarized as follows:
The PIDAC document reinforces the importance of involving all areas - Infection Prevention and Control, Environmental Services and Occupational Health and Safety - in all decision making processes relating to changes in cleaning and disinfection procedures and products.
Reference 160 cites the study in the American Journal of Infection Control, performed with a portable steam vapour cleaning system equipped with the TANCS disinfection system. TANCS offers lab proven performance against C.diff spores, MRSA, VRE and more.
Using the tools supplied with a steam vapour cleaning system equipped with TANCS, cracks, crevices, large surfaces (vertical and horizontal), soft and hard surfaces and equipment can be cleaned and disinfected in one step.
Table 1 in the document lists the items found to harbour microorganisms in the Healthcare Environment. The use of steam on these items will disrupt the transmission of microorganisms. Eliminating the need for dwell time on bed frames, bed rails, door and faucet handles combined with the unique ability of steam to reach areas such as bed frames, all areas of overbed tables, crevices in hoist/lift and slings, mattressess, sink drains, and hinges on toilet seats and commode chairs provides the opportunity for a thorough clean and disinfection.
The process of cleaning with steam eliminates several concerns addressed in the document associated with chemical methods:
The use of this broad spectrum cleaning method also aids in the ability to improve the accuracy of a visual assessment to measure cleanliness. When steam is used to provide a visibly clean surface, the heat transfer associated ensures removal of residues (organic or inorganic).
Box 16 offers a sample procedure for room cleaning. All critera are met with a steam vapour cleaning system, including the following concerns:
Box 19 is another example of tasks made easier and safer with a steam vapour system:
Box 30 is the Sample Procedure for VRE Situations - again made simpler and more efficient and thorough using a steam vapour cleaning system.
Within the document, many disadvantages and comments are presented to provide an unbiased and thorough evaluation, allowing for best informed decisions and best practices to be followed in our Healthcare system. The disadvantages of all chemical applications are listed, and should be evaluated. The use of tap water to create steam vapour continues to be the most environmentally responsible and broad spectrum cleaning option available. Lab reports and clinical trial updates are available upon request to verify the efficacy of steam vapour in Healthcare settings.
®Registered Trademark of Advanced Vapor Technologies, LLC
© 2013 Steam Cleaning Equipment Vapor Steam Cleaning All rights reserved.