Left to right: Carol Herman, AAMI’s senior vice president of standards policy and programs, holds a USB drive with the proceedings from past Kilmer Conferences, while Joyce Hansen, vice president of J&J sterility assurance, and Mary Logan, AAMI president, hold a print copy of one volume of the proceedings.
Johnson & Johnson (J&J) has donated the published proceedings from conferences on sterilization of medical products to the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI), which will make the material available online as a complimentary service to the sterilization community.
Primarily, the proceedings come from what are known as the Kilmer Conferences, events that brought together leaders in sterility assurance and sterilization. Held every two to three years between 1976 and 2003, the Kilmer Conferences were organized and hosted by J&J, a reflection of the company’s commitment to advancing sterilization science and related health issues.
Joyce Hansen, vice president of J & J sterility assurance, donated the archived material during AAMI’s Sterilization Standards Week, which ran April 27-30 in Annapolis, Md.
Additionally, J&J announced that the Kilmer Conference—an invitation-only event—would return in the spring of 2016. Specifically, J&J will host the next Kilmer Conference May 2-6, 2016 in New Brunswick, N.J. The conference, Hansen said, would focus on manufacturers’ needs and considerations with sterilization, looking at the total life cycle of a product. AAMI has agreed to serve as a supporting organization to the conference and will develop a separate workshop focusing on some industrial sterilization basics in conjunction with that conference. The Parenteral Drug Association will also serve as a supporting organization.
“The Johnson & Johnson sponsored Kilmer Conference has always been central to innovation in our field. And with Johnson & Johnson reinstating the conference in May of 2016, I know it will continue to be,” Hansen says. “By donating the proceedings from Kilmer Conferences dating back to 1976, Johnson & Johnson is making a big statement about its commitment to pioneering progress in sterilization and sterility assurance for years to come. The Kilmer Conference was instrumental in creating our professional community, and we look forward to bringing industry leaders together again in 2016.”
Carol Herman, AAMI’s senior vice president of standards policy and programs, hailed the donation and reinstatement of the Kilmer Conference. “All of this is exciting news for sterilization professionals, especially those who work in the manufacturing setting. Even a passing glance at news stories would tell you how vitally important it is for medical products to be properly decontaminated and sterilized. It is more important now than ever before than sterilization community to have a firm grounding in the fundamentals and understand how technology is rapidly changing. With Johnson & Johnson’s donation and leadership, we’re on our way to expanding the sterilization body of knowledge.”
AAMI president Mary Logan thanked Johnson & Johnson, saying the donation of the conference proceedings and the reinstatement of the Kilmer Conference reflects an appreciation for the fact that the sterilization community must do more to groom the next generation of leaders in this field.
“AAMI is very committed to supporting a strong community of experts in the field of sterility assurance, and we feel fortunate to work with partners such as Johnson & Johnson,” Logan says, noting that AAMI is developing certifications for industrial sterilization professionals. Additionally, AAMI published Industrial Sterilization: Research from the Field in 2013. A second edition of that publication is now in the works. Finally, AAMI University offers several courses and programs that cover industrial sterilization topics, such as ethylene oxide fundamentals and radiation sterilization for medical devices.
“Industrial sterilization is a subject of growing interest at AAMI,” Logan says. “We’re going to work with the leaders and experts in the field to ensure we offer the best resources possible to today's professionals and the emerging leaders who will take the science to the next level.”
The proceedings from the Kilmer Conferences have been published in eight separate volumes, and they are rich in what they cover. Topics include: environmental controls in manufacturing, the importance of bioburden in sterile processing, pyrogen testing, ethylene oxide sterilization, regulatory considerations, gamma sterilization, and validation challenges. Presenters at the conferences came from a variety of backgrounds, both nationally and internationally. J&J also donated two volumes of material on sterilization by ionizing radiation.
AAMI is creating a web page to showcase the material and will announce its availability at a later date.