Until recently,the most advanced sterilization technology was found only in large hospital sterilizers.There is now a growing demand for more sophisticated sterilization technologies in a variety of professions.If you follow a few simple steps,you can have clean,sterilized instruments that can be used in any medical situation.
1.Move the instruments.Instruments that have been used need to be collected and removed from the area where they were used.Take them to the area where you decontaminate things in your environment,such as a Decontamination Area in a Processing Department.This will help cut down on the chance of the contamination of the personal areas or other surfaces within the work space.The instruments should be covered when they are being moved in covered carts,containers,or plastic bags.
2.Wear the right clothes.Before you handle any contaminated instruments,you need to be dressed for the part.Workers in areas that decontaminate instruments should wear protective clothing,such as a scrub or other moisture-resistant clothing.You should also have on show covers.plastic or rubber gloves,and a hair net or other covering. You might also need to wear protective goggles in certain situation if the substance you are using the decontaminate the instruments splatters.
3.Clean yourself up.Before starting to clean your instruments,you must be sterile so you won't transfer any bacteria or germs to the instruments.You should wear a sterile gown while washing the instruments.You then need to put on a sterile cap for your hair and cover your face with a mask.You need to wear protective eye covers,which will keep any potentially hazardous liquid from splashing into your eyes.Finish by putting on a pair of sterile gloves.
4.Clean instruments immediately after use.Instruments must be cleaned immediately after use and happen before you attempt to sterilize them.Remove inorganic and organic debris from the instruments with a soft plastic scrub brush and medically approved detergent.Scrub each instrument well to remove all residual matter,such as blood or organic tissue.If the instrument is hinged or opens,make sure you clean the inside and outside surfaces.You don't want any residual matter to get stuck in the gears.After you scrub them,you need to run the instruments under pressured water to make sure any extra matter is cleared off.This also helps clean areas that are unable to be reached by brushes.
If you don't wash the instruments beforehand,the process may not sterilize the materials and compromise the whole endeavor.
There are solutions available to soak the instruments in.Look for a neutral pH detergents solution.Added enzymes will also make it easier to clean the surface of the instruments.
If not cleaned properly,it may affect the health of the patient.
There are automatic washers that you can use for this stage,but their use depends on the facility and location of the cleaning process.
5.Rinse and dry the instruments.After cleaning the instruments,rinse them for 30 seconds.Place them on a clean towel and allow them to thoroughly dry.Instruments must be dry and free from mineral deposits because such substances may cause damage to the instruments or sterilizer.
Cleaning the instruments is not meant to sterilize them.This step just prepares them for sterilization.Sterilization will destroy all microorganisms on the surface of the instrument,preventing infection.
Use caution when handling careful sharp items like scissors,blades,and other sharp implements.