Cleaning and disinfecting are different processes. Cleaning removes germs from surfaces but disinfecting kills these germs completely. Thermal disinfection is a safe and secure process used by hospitals, vets, dental clinics, and care homes to ensure the safety of both patients and healthcare workers.
What is Disinfection?
When you disinfect equipment, you are destroying nearly all pathogenic microorganisms that may be residing on the surface. Disinfection can only be accomplished by using chemicals or heat.
Chemical disinfectants can be harmful to people and in healthcare environments, where safety is paramount, thermal disinfection is the preferred choice.
How does Thermal Disinfection work?
Equipment can be disinfected by using moist heat which maintains a specific temperature for a specific amount of time. Steam is produced, and if the correct temperature is maintained for the right amount of time, it will kill any bacteria that may be on the surface.
This is because live proteins are unable to survive heat exposure of this kind.
Without thermal disinfection, debris on medical and surgical equipment would only wash away in the cleaning process.
This equipment could not be used again as it would not be safe. Infections such as MRSA, E.Coli and Norovirus may still be present and would potentially put people at risk.
What are the Benefits of Thermal Disinfection?
Thermal disinfection improves infection control compliance. It kills a multitude of bacteria which makes it well-suited to medical settings where many different types of microorganisms are present.
Using a washer disinfector as part of your cleaning process prevents cross-contamination and ensures that health risks are minimised for anyone who may come in contact with the cleaned medical equipment.
Thermal disinfection also ensures there are no harmful chemicals left on medical and surgical equipment.
Some chemical disinfectants can be dangerous and should be used with caution.
Using a Washer Disinfector
Washer disinfectors are the ideal machines to use when disinfecting instruments and other medical parts. Once loaded, these machines direct high pressure and high-temperature water onto the instruments. A display panel tells you that the heat has been maintained for the appropriate length of time. It is the most accurate and reliable way to thermal disinfect items that require it.
Our washer disinfectors come pre-programmed to ensure the correct length of time is used for a particular heat setting. We can guarantee your equipment will be disinfected and can be used again safely.
Can I Manually Disinfect Things Thermally?
Technically, you can. But we wouldn’t recommend it. If you try and manually disinfect thermally, it is very difficult to know if the items have been disinfected successfully. Without using a washer disinfector, you have no way to guarantee that the steam has been hot enough for the right amount of time. As well as this, producing steam in the open air can help bacteria to spread. For infection control reasons, we would not recommend trying to thermal disinfect items manually.
Dekomed has a range of washer disinfectors suitable for hospitals, care homes, vets and dentist surgeries. All our machines provide outstanding disinfecting, which significantly reduces the risk of infection.
Not only do we provide full-support through the buying and fitting process, but we also provide first-class after-care. This means if you have any concerns with your machine, one of our engineers will be on hand to ensure it remains working hard for you and your team.
To talk further about how we can help with your thermal disinfecting needs, contact us, and we will be happy to help.