Safety

Tip of the week: Verify that workers know how to clean IV pumps

Hospital Safety Insider, October 24, 2007

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Staff members who clean IV pumps must know the proper methods to protect themselves and patients.

Each manufacturer outlines specific steps for cleaning and disinfecting pumps. Also noted in these instructions are proper precautions to prevent employee exposure to blood, body fluids, and disinfecting chemicals. When it comes to devices, always clean first to remove organic debris, then disinfect, said Joan Wideman, owner of JMW Consulting, LLC, in Clawson, MI.

Training should ensure that the cleaning and disinfecting solution used on the pumps is compatible with the surface. In addition, for electrical safety, it may be necessary to unplug the device during certain cleaning procedures.

Of special note are considerations for certain organisms that are difficult to kill, such as Clostridium difficile and norovirus, Wideman said.

The cleaning product must be approved by the Environmental Protection Agency and workers must follow instructions on the label for contact time (i.e., how long the disinfectant must remain wet to work).

Editor's note: This tip came from HCPro's newsletter, Briefings on Infection Control.



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