Microorganisms are all around us in our daily lives. While some bacteria can have positive benefits; in a hospital setting they can cause infection and sometimes death. Unfortunately, pathogenic bacteria are capable of lingering on surfaces for months or even years! This can be very dangerous especially when inhabiting high-touch surfaces in hospitals that are difficult to disinfect regularly or effectively. Shared objects that come in contact with one patient after another are at risk of fostering cross-contamination.
Tags: Managing Disinfection, Pathogenic Bacteria, Healthcare Technology, Infection Prevention, Methods of Decontamination, Healthcare Acquired Infection, Healthcare, Mobile Devices in OR, HAI, Tablets, Health IT, Cell Phones in OR, Tablet Disinfection, Patient Health
As mobile devices become more prevalent in healthcare settings, their benefits are equally challenged by threats that go beyond what meets the eye. Nine out of every ten mobile applications have security holes that make them vulnerable to attack, and a greater percentage are usually inhabited with bacteria.
The usage of mobile devices has risen significantly in recent years due to all the advantages in mobile technology happening everyday. However, because the technology comes in close contact with healthcare workers and patients, it leaves patients susceptible to infection. Below, we bring you 4 articles that prove mobile disinfection needs to be implemented into daily routines in healthcare facilities.
According to CDC reports, over 700,000 hospital patients acquired an infection as a result of their hospital stay in 2011, resulting in roughly 75,000 deaths. The majority of these Hospital Acquired Infections (HAIs) occurred in intensive care units.
Computer tablets have been present in the healthcare industry for several years now. Since its introduction, the technology has continued to evolve, changing the way healthcare workers engage with patients. Newer models contain more capacity for advanced/newer features, making it is crucial for healthcare facilities to stay up to date in this ever-changing environment. That is why we complied a list of the 5 most popular tablets that will benefit your healthcare clinic. Use this list as a guide to picking your next tablet purchase.
Recently, ReadyDock covered some of the top healthcare apps for tablet use in the clinical setting. Here, we’ll outline apps specifically tailored to enhance efficiency and information accessibility for healthcare workers.
If you're like any one of us on the ReadyDock Team, then you want to stay in the know with what's new in the world of healthcare. Here, we like to stay connected through news sources like Modern Healthcare and organizations such as Infection Control Today. However, another way to stay connected is through social media, where news and information is literally brought to your fingertips. We've compiled a list of some of our most influential friends on Twitter so you can start building more relationships and share relevant trending content.
It is well established in infection prevention practice that surfaces in hospital rooms are continually contaminated by infectious pathogens. The sources of these dangerous pathogens range from people who enter the room with contaminated hands and compromised clothing, from contaminated instruments and items that are brought in and out of the room like personal and enterprise issued mobile devices, and from the patient themselves. In addition, the air entering the room is not sterile and deposits pathogen containing fomites which settle onto all the surfaces adding to the degree of bio burden compromise.
It is also well established that the accumulated pathogens residing on high touch surfaces are then transferred onto bare or gloved hands and clothing of nurses, doctors, visitors, and environmental workers when touched, which in turn puts patients at great risk since they or their immediate surroundings are consequently contaminated by touch transfer mechanisms. Hence, even perfect attention to between patient visit hand sanitation by healthcare workers (HCWs); 100% compliance, and effective sanitization of hands to – 4 log10 inactivation, (99.99%); which is not currently achieved), will leave the hands contaminated while performing tasks within the room. This situation is judged to be unavoidable.
Accordingly, the ultimate solution espoused by WHO is hand sanitation immediately prior to patient contact; the Five Special Moments (‘FSM’), so that patients or the patient’s surroundings are not contaminated as a result of attention or care from a healthcare worker, attendant, or a visitor. Currently, the use of alcohol rubs just prior to contact is recommended by WHO for hand sanitation despite the fact that during a shift 100 or more alcohol rub hand sanitations, each taking at least 30 seconds, almost one hour dedicated to hand sanitation per shift, would be required. Moreover alcohol rub is not free of hand irritation and is totally ineffective on spores such as C. diff and some viruses. Hand washing is usually less effective, takes more time and is generally more irritating. There is no currently available product that can meet the WHO FSM requirement so it remains an objective, but not yet a reality.
As a response to problematic hand hygiene, a number of companies are now offering UV-C-based, room disinfection devices which have as their purpose to supplement terminal cleaning. They nominally sanitize room surfaces in as little as 15 minutes, and by lowering bio burden levels, help to minimize additional contamination of hands and clothing when the surfaces are contacted later. This sanitation process must be carried out in a vacant room due to the dangers UV-C poses to unprotected eyes, so it is generally performed only after patient discharge and cleaning by environmental workers.
To understand the efficacy of this approach, it is important to recognize that to inactivate pathogens, especially hardy C. difficile endospores, to the nominal – 4 log10 or 99.99% sanitation level in 15 minutes, typically requires a direct, continuous, line of sight UV-C dose for the entire 900 second period on the entire surface area. Keeping in mind that UV-C intensity of a source falls off with dramatically with distance from that source. This approach could be effective in sanitizing most of a room’s surfaces from normal incidence rays falling directly on these surfaces. This would be the case for walls, which are actually not touch surfaces in most cases.
Tablet and other mobile devices are changing the ways in which healthcare providers access medical information and interface with patients. Apple’s iPad continues to be the tablet of choice for most physicians, followed by the Kindle Fire. For portability reasons, though, many clinicians still prefer toting a smaller smart phone than a larger tablet.
As tablet use in healthcare becomes more common place, the number of apps which boast usefulness to the medical professional also soars, and providers need to be sure that the apps they’re using in their practices provide relevant and accurate information, a rather daunting task considering the number of apps available.
Mobile Health Newspublished a list of their top 80 applications for healthcare
Mobile Health News’ complete list of 80 can be found here. professionals. The list covers apps relevant to physicians and nurses.
Here, 10 apps for medical professionals in the various care categories.
1. Medscape “The leading medical resource most used by physicians, medical students, nurses, and other healthcare professionals for clinical information.” Apple users give this app 4.5 stars. It’s free, and gives the user access to medical news, drug and disease information, medical calculators, and continuing medical education information.
2. Visual DX is a “support and reference tool for physicians includes 1300+ diagnoses and 28000+ medical images to aid diagnosis.” The app includes actual patient pictures depicting symptoms of different disease in order to help clinicians and students visually identify different illnesses.
3. Epocrates and Epocrates CME are both “trusted clinical resource[s]…[with] more than 2 million active members including physicians.” Through this app you can find consults and referrals in the provider directory, review drug-prescribing information, perform different clinically important calculations.
4. Muscle System Pro III was developed “in collaboration with Stanford University School of Medicine.” The app features 360 degree rotation of any body part, 10 layers of superficial and deep muscle visualizations, animations, and quizzes to allow students to test themselves on specific areas or muscles. Primarily a learning tool but can also be used as a reference app.