Research for infection protection

New generation of disposable systems to enhance patient protection in high-risk areas

To adequately protect patients against infection in intensive care, haematological oncology, neonatology and burn units, certain hygiene precautions must be observed. This includes the recommendations of the German Association for Applied Hygiene (VAH) that explicitly recommends to not use re-usable systems for surface disinfection in high-risk areas [1]. A safe alternative are modern single-use wipes dispenser systems that are discarded after use.

Bacterial spread is a risk factor in surface disinfection. The use of re-fillable wipes dispenser systems can considerably reduce contamination risks, e.g. due to cloths that are dipped into disinfection solutions again. In clinical practice, however, it appears that the safety advantage of these systems is lost when the containers are reprocessed inadequately. A frequent problem, as a study by the BODE SCIENCE CENTER shows: as many as 42.4 per cent of the tested solutions that were collected in 13 hospitals were highly contaminated with differing pathogens, including the Gram-negative Serratia bacteria [2].

Contamination due to poor reprocessing

Gram-negative pathogens show a higher ability to form biofilms that can lead to a development of disinfectant tolerances (exception: alcohol-based and alcohol-based disinfectants). A poor reprocessing of the wipes dispenser system is one of the main reasons for this phenomenon. Consequently, for high-risk areas, VAH recommends to strictly not use wipes dispenser systems that need to be reprocessed. This recommendation is also true when only the lid of the dispenser system needs to be reprocessed.

New generation of disposable wipes dispensers for even more safety

An alternative are single-use containers with integrated fleece roll, which simply can be discarded after use. The single use reduces the risk of contaminating the disinfection solution and also reliably prevents the formation of biofilm.

The new generation of disposable dispensers such as the X-Wipes Safety Pack additionally decreases the risk of contamination when filling the dispenser: the patented opening prevents hands from reaching into the container and therefore avoids a contact with the fleece roll. Another advantage: when using single-use dispenser systems, microbiological in-use hygiene controls, as specified by VAH for all products that are not based on alcohol, are not necessary.

In addition to the X-Wipes Safety Pack, also HARTMANN’s pre-saturated wipes (ready-to-use systems) such as the Bacillol® 30 Tissues can be used to comply with the VAH recommendations.

1. Zur Verwendung von Tuchspendersystemen in Bereichen mit besonderem Infektionsrisiko. Mitteilung der Desinfektionsmittel-Kommission im VAH unter Mitwirkung der „4+4-Arbeitsgruppe“. Hyg Med 2014; 39 – 9.
2. Kampf G et al. (2013) Poorly processed reusable dispensers for surface disinfection tissues are a possible source of infection. BMC Infectious Diseases 2014, 14:37.