Bridging the gap on hospital hygiene

When it comes to hospital hygiene, there’s no room for gaps – so it’s surprising that such a chasm has emerged between the principal methods used to sanitise and disinfect hospital settings.

One of the most widely used methods of removing infectious pathogens from clinical environments has changed little since Florence Nightingale walked the wards 100 years ago, and that’s the use of chlorine-based disinfectants to manually wipe down surfaces with a cloth.  

Meanwhile at the other end of the spectrum, the alternatives to this basic method are advanced, 21st century technologies such as UV disinfection and the use of Hydrogen Peroxide Vapour (HPV) to kill germs without the need for manual involvement at all.

Interestingly, none of these methods is without shortcomings – and what about the gap in between? 

What if Trusts and IPC directors are concerned that manual cleaning is taking too much time, but can’t afford the huge financial outlay of these high-tech machines, which runs into the tens of thousands per unit?

What if they don’t want to spend a chunk of their budget each year training staff up to use this new equipment, only for them to move onto other roles? 

What if they’re concerned about external contractors or maintenance personnel coming into infection-secure environments to operate or repair hygiene equipment?

What if they want all the convenience of high-tech disinfection, coupled with the tried-and-trusted efficacy of manual disinfection?  What if there was an easier way to get better results on hygiene?

Hospitals need a better method

Broadly speaking, the requirement for hospital hygiene really hasn’t changed much in the past century.  With the exception of antibiotic-resistant superbugs, we’re still dealing with the same kinds of pathogens that have always made people sick, albeit with a much deeper understanding of infection control.

What HAS changed, however, is the size of our populations and the number of people living into old age, with all the associated complications – and that has vastly increased demand for healthcare services.  When something like a pandemic comes along, the problem becomes even clearer – hospitals depend on good infection control just to stay operational, but they don’t have the time or the manpower to rely solely on manual disinfection any more.

High-tech methods like UVC and HPV have been developed to address this issue, but they overlook that fact that hospitals are busier than ever.  These technologies don’t slot easily into frenetic departments where there’s always demand for beds, because they require that bays or individual rooms be fully evacuated prior to use.  In the case of HPV, areas must be left sealed and monitored externally until it’s deemed safe for people to go back in.

Both UV and HPV require specialist training for operators, and ongoing support for both maintenance and troubleshooting.  This can result in even more delays when a terminal deep clean is urgently required, since trained staff may not be available at a moment’s notice, or the equipment may not always be operational.

What hospital IPC teams really need is a simpler technology that can bridge the gap between manual and high-tech – and we believe that’s where VIRONEX comes in.

How VIRONEX makes a difference

VIRONEX is a highly effective antibacterial, virucidal and sporicidal disinfectant cleaner delivered in a fine, continuous mist spray.  It can safely be applied to any surface, including vinyl, textiles and metal, without fear of damage, excess absorption, or corrosion that often results from the use of other disinfectant systems.  This means there’s no need to evacuate rooms before disinfection.

Approved to six BS EN standards, VIRONEX is proven effective against 99.999% of pathogens in a single application, with no need to wipe.  It’s supplied in a pre-pressurised canister with a simple applicator wand that has no high-tech parts to break down, and allows personnel to apply a fine mist of disinfectant to virtually any surface with minimal physical effort.  The mist itself is optimised to 20 microns for superior surface coverage that dries quickly and falls out of suspension in seconds, reducing the need for lengthy exclusion times – spaces treated with VIRONEX are safe to reoccupy in less than ten minutes.

VIRONEX is also highly portable.  The system doesn’t need a power supply so it goes anywhere and it’s always ready for use.  It’s so simple to use that only basic training and PPE is required, which means anyone can use it.  As a result, there’s no waiting around for specifically trained personnel to come and carry out an enhanced clean when required, speeding up bed turnarounds and minimising opportunities for infection to spread.

VIRONEX is simple to implement and simple to use, offering Trusts and hospital IPC personnel a genuinely practical and effective solution to disinfection in this most crucial of settings.  

To find out more, contact vironex@quinglobal.com