Are inefficiencies in the room turnover process impacting your practice?
While each operatory in your practice may see ten or more patients daily, and the time in between patients may go by in the blink of an eye, those precious few minutes between patients are critical to the success of the practice and the safety of your patients. Although the steps in infection prevention are numerous, they are all important and the stakes are high.
As you walk back from reception after escorting your patient out, you return to the operatory and look at the clock. You have fewer than five minutes to spare. Four or five minutes and countless surfaces to clean and disinfect. Every second counts in situations like these – which is to say that you're in a time crunch between every patient treatment.
It's nearly impossible to count all the opportunities to potentially spread infection between patient to practitioner, practitioner to patient, or patient to patient in the dental office.
In 1 ml of saliva, there are over 100 million microorganisms. If you can imagine the amount of aerosolized bodily fluids in one patient appointment, combined with the growing number of drug-resistant pathogens, the math gets pretty scary. And while there are numerous pathogens looking for the next opportunity to strike, we have ways of effectively controlling the situation. In addition to thorough instrument cleaning and sterilization, proper hand hygiene, and wearing personal protective equipment, surface disinfection is equally as important to the prevention of spreading infection.
There's not really a remedy for replacing disposable barriers or tidying an operatory more quickly. But there are ways to ensure that the myriad surfaces in your operatory get disinfected effectively – and quickly.
The right surface disinfectant will have a few key characteristics you should look for. These qualities will ensure more effective disinfection, surface compatibility, and ease of use, which lead to enhanced results.
- The disinfectant will be tuberculocidal. A surface disinfectant that is tuberculocidal will also be effective on a wide range of pathogens that are less tenacious than mycobacterium tuberculosis (TB).
- The disinfectant will be both a cleaner and a disinfectant. This means one product can be used to achieve two important aims. (More on this in a bit!)
- The disinfectant will have a rapid contact time (kill time) – Ideally 3 minutes or less.
- The disinfectant will have good surface compatibility. It will not stain, discolor, corrode, dull, or otherwise damage the range of surfaces it is needed on.
- The disinfectant will be fragrance free, have low-toxicity, and low allergy potential.
- The disinfectant will not require rinsing, or leave behind a sticky residue.
- The disinfectant will be easy to use! This includes easy-to-follow instructions, easy storage and disposal requirements, and a reasonable shelf-life.
Hu-Friedy's AdvantaClear Surface Disinfectant has all of these features and more! It is a ready-to-use product with a one-minute kill time for over 30 different pathogens (and a fast, two-minute kill time for TB). It cleans and disinfects, is a low-alcohol, fragrance-free formula, and can be used on a wide range of surfaces.
AdvantaClear is available as a ready-to-use liquid and wipes. These ready-to-use formulations make surface cleaning and disinfection a breeze, as there's no need to measure, dilute, and mix – allowing fewer opportunities for user error.
So when you get back to that operatory after transporting your used instruments, you can feel optimistic about cleaning and disinfecting all the surfaces you need to before your next patient arrives. Stainless steel, plastic, vinyl, chrome, acrylic, and more – none of these is a challenge for the right surface disinfectant. When these surfaces – and the pathogens that linger on them – meet their match, you can clean and disinfect with confidence and efficiency... and perhaps with a minute to spare.