Researchers Audit Sterilization Practices in Surgical Services Departments

Zoungrana, et al. (2013) say the consolidation of sterilization at the same surgical services site is the only way for institutions to maintain internal control of the sterilization process for medical devices. They report on their audit of the sterilization of medical services in surgical units of their hospital that have a sterilization department.

This descriptive cross-sectional survey was conducted in seven surgical services departments with personnel involved in the sterilization of reusable medical devices. Data collection was conducted through individual interviews with staff, observation of practices and assessment of documentation available in the service.

A pre-disinfection occurred immediately after surgery in 93.03 percent of cases. Dilutions of the preparation of decontamination solutions were made randomly. During decontamination, the equipment was totally immersed in only 72.1 percent of cases. There was insufficient contact time between disinfectant and contaminated equipment in the majority of observations. Cleaning of all equipment including containers was performed in only 4.65 percent of times. Drying was done in the open air in 2 out of 5 other services. The cleaning material consisted of unsterile compresses (36.36 percent), already used fields (27.27 percent), sterile gauze (21.21 percent), clean fields (15.15 percent). Sterilization processes used: Poupinel (one service); Poupinel and formalin (five services); Poupinel, autoclave and formalin (one service). The researchers also found no registration of autoclaving parameters (temperature, pressure, time), and a lack of procedural steps in the sterilizing of reusable equipment.

Reference: J Zoungrana, IP Guissou, F Zongo, H Dhainsala. Poster presentation P393 at the 2nd International Conference on Prevention and Infection Control (ICPIC 2013): Assessment of the practice of sterilization of medical devices in the services of surgery of chu the university hospital Yalgado Ouedraogo (Chu-Yo). Antimicrobial Resistance and Infection Control 2013, 2(Suppl 1):P393.