HTM Discussion Group

Internal Contamination of Equipment near COVID-19 patients

  • 1.  Internal Contamination of Equipment near COVID-19 patients

    Posted 04-06-2020 11:02
    ​Good morning everyone!
        I have a few questions regarding internal contamination of equipment and how you and your facilities are or may be handling this issue:

    1. ECRI has the following guidance from the SARS-CoV incident a few years ago:

    Minimal infection concern. If the interior of a device is exposed to SARS-CoV from room air-most likely air drawn into the device by a cooling fan-there may be some concern about contamination. Until more is known about the transmission of SARS, we suggest that hospitals err on the side of caution and use simple protective measures for even such minimal-risk situations. These measures are readily implemented (see Specific Protective Steps, below). Note, however, that the warm air that is generally circulating inside a device with a cooling fan promotes drying and dilution of contaminants, which may reduce the viability of some viruses.

    2. Do you and/or organization have concerns about devices with cooling fans creating challenges around internal contamination of equipment that has been exposed to COVID patients for treatment?
    3. How are you and your organization handling filter changes on equipment within contaminated areas or on COVID patients?
    4. What has your experience been with the frequency of changing such filters?
    5. Have you discussed this issue with your OEM's? If so, what has been their response.
    6. Have you set up any specific de-contamination processes within your department specifically around this issue? If so, what steps have you taken to attempt to mitigate this issue?

    Any information you can provide will be extremely helpful.

    Dean Skillicorn, CBET, CHTM