In an original article coauthored by John M. Boyce, MD; Nancy L. Havill, MT; and Brent A. Moore, PhD, "Terminal Decontamination of Patient Rooms Using an Automated Mobile UV Light Unit" (Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology, August 2011), the research team from the Hospital of Saint Raphael and the Yale University School of Medicine "... demonstrated that an automated, portable UV light device significantly reduced aerobic colony counts on high-touch surfaces in patient rooms. Two previous studies evaluated the ability of the same automated UV light device (Tru-D®; Lumalier) to decontaminate surfaces in laboratory settings and hospital rooms."
All three studies are specific to Tru-D®, a calibrated UV disinfection instrument featuring patented Sensor360 technology that has undergone rigorous third-party clinical testing on more than 100 contaminated hospital rooms under demanding, scientifically controlled conditions. Tru-D® Disinfection is not based on calculated averages or estimates. The Sensor360 array scans the targeted space to automatically compensate for every unique variable in real time to assure confident disinfection of all environmental surfaces. Company claims have been proven to be repeatable, significantly reducing human error regardless of room configuration or content complexity.
The article concluded that research "confirmed the results of previous studies that demonstrated that (Tru-D®) significantly reduced environmental contamination on surfaces in patient rooms." Although the assessment in the Yale study was more rigorous than previous studies, "...the levels of reduction in vegetative bacteria and C. difficile spores observed in our study were similar to those reported previously."
In the same issue of ICHE, the research team of William A. Rutala, PhD, MPH, and David J. Weber, MD, MPH, published a confirmation of the Boyce et al. study. In the commentary "Are Room Decontamination Units Needed to Prevent Transmission of Environmental Pathogens?" Rutala and Weber determined after a comprehensive literature review that only Tru-D®'s automated method of measuring reflected UV dose has device-specific, evidence-based data to prove efficacy, deeming the device uniquely suitable for implementation into healthcare facilities, noting that Tru-D® "has been shown to eliminate more than 3-log vegetative bacteria (MRSA, VRE, and Acinetobacter) and more than 2.4-log C. difficile in contaminated patient rooms . . .
"Room decontamination with the (Tru-D®) system resulted in significant reductions in aerobic bacteria... Boyce et al. reports the results of assessing the effectiveness of (Tru-D®) in reducing environmental contamination with vegetative bacteria and C. difficile..."
The authors noted Tru-D's "ability to substantially reduce C. difficile, given that low-level disinfectants (such as quaternary ammonium compounds) have limited measurable activity against spore-forming bacteria." Tru-D's Smart UVC no-touch method of disinfection is chemical- and residual-free and decontaminates all exposed surfaces and equipment in the room. Other studies support Tru-D®'s ability to decontaminate surfaces in hospital rooms. After inoculating surfaces with MRSA, VRE, or C. difficile spores, Nerandzic et al.(1) found that C. difficile spores and MRSA were reduced by more than 24 log and VRE by more than 34 log.
Researchers caution against integrating any technology into healthcare facilities without evidence-based device-specific data, and without safety certifications from nationally recognized testing laboratories such as UL or ETL.
The commentary concludes, "...no disinfection system should be introduced into any healthcare facility until the specific system is studied and its efficacy demonstrated... There is now ample evidence that no-touch systems such as (Tru-D®)...can reduce environmental contamination with healthcare-associated pathogens."
Reference: (1) Nerandzic MM, Cadnum JL, Pultz MJ, Donskey CJ. Evaluation of an automated ultraviolet radiation system for decontamination of Clostridium difficile and other healthcare-associated pathogens in hospital rooms. BMC Infectious Diseases 2010;10:197.