How To Meet New JCAHO Survey Criteria For Flash Sterilization

by Surgical Products

PHILADELPHIA, October 30, 2009 -- In response to recent updates to the Joint Commission’s policy regarding use of flash sterilization, Millennium Surgical Corp., a surgical instrument supplier, has been fielding hundreds of inquiries from hospitals and surgical centers as to what is needed and how to comply. Millennium’s staff of product consultants works with clients through a series of questions in reference to current sterilization practices, layout of sterile processing department, operating room’s access to sterile processing autoclave size, or typical instrument sets of concern.

Solutions have been developed to address the updated JCAHO policy including the use of the FLASH-GUARD® closed flash containers. The FLASH-GUARD® container meets gravity steam flash sterilization parameters (270°F for 3 or 10minutes) as defined by ANSI, AAMI, AORN and sterilizer manufacturers. A FLASH-GUARD® closed sterilization system allows for the safe flash sterilization and transportation of sterile instruments from the autoclave to the point of use. Unnecessary contamination risks can now be eliminated by using the FLASH-GUARD®. The FLASH-GUARD® system helps ensure compliance with the updated policy from JCAHO.

The Joint Commission (JCAHO) listed the following areas on which it will focus to survey the integrity of flash sterilization practices at hospitals and ASCs:

  • Storage or return to the sterile field. Each newly sterilized instrument must be carefully protected to ensure that it is not re-contaminated.
  • Instruments subjected to steam sterilization using methods other than full cycle sterilization may be transported in “flash pans” or other devices specifically designed for the prevention of contamination during and after the steam process.

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