When it comes to handling and taking care of sensitive ophthalmology equipment, there are key steps you should follow. Regardless of whether the ophthalmology equipment is being cleaned in a clinic or at a surgery site, there are typically four important steps you should take to thoroughly disinfect and decontaminate them. Every step is vital and no shortcuts should be taken. Here are the detailed descriptions of each step to help you out.
The Cleaning Process
Cleaning should be done as an immediate first step so that blood, particles or debris would not have time to dry on the equipment and hinder the cleaning process. Debris that is found on the instruments can prevent the sterilizing agent from working effectively on their surface.
You can choose to clean the instruments by hand with a sterilized wet sponge, or a toothbrush with soft bristles. Take note that for instruments with lumens, you’ll need to flush them first with distilled water, and subsequently with compressed air. For hinged instruments, you can use a lubricant to protect them and reduce the probability of corrosion. Also, ensure that the instruments are dried thoroughly before storing them.
The Sterilization Process
Next, you’ll need to sterilize the instruments and this can be done in a few different ways. Popular methods include sterilization using liquid and gas in a chemical process that utilizes heat. However, even though heat is effective, you have to be careful of the risks involved. Some parts of the equipment such as fiber optics and specific kinds of plastic are susceptible to destruction by heat.
Steam sterilization is the most traditional and time-tested method that can be done with the help of an autoclave. The autoclave provides the pressure to turn the steam into a sterilizing agent.
Validation of the Sterilization Process
After going through the sterilization process, there is still an important component attached to the process known as quality control. This refers to the monitoring of the sterilization procedure to validate its process and ensure its efficacy.
Monitoring can be done physically, mechanically or chemically. The former two methods include use of displays like charts, gauges, and printouts that measure and appraise the conditions for sterilization. On the other hand, chemical monitoring makes use of indicators that change in appearance once they have interacted with sterilization parameters.
Storage of Sterile Equipment
After sensitive ophthalmology equipment has been sterilized, you have to make sure the instruments are safely stored to prevent and protect them from contamination. For a start, use sterilization pouches that are of the right size to allow steam to circulate. Also, invest in tip protectors to safeguard the tips from any impairment. Lastly, make sure you include a chemical indicator in the pouch to ensure that the sterilant has treated the equipment.
Protect Your Sensitive Equipment with Equipment Covers from Creative Covers
If you’d like to keep the sensitive equipment or instruments in your workplace safe from contaminants, or would like to have bags or pouches to store them in, Creative Covers can meet your various needs. We offer customization of equipment covers that can provide your instruments with effective protection against impurities, or corrosion. Rest assured that your equipment covers will be made with top quality materials. Contact us now if you would like to protect and prolong the use of your equipment with our reliable covers.