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The University of Southampton
Global Network for Anti-Microbial Resistance and Infection Prevention

SWT delivers first device into pilot for cleaning surgical instruments to prevent cross-infection between patients

Published: 12 December 2019
Surgical instrument

On 12 December 2019, Sloan Water Technology Ltd delivered the first of its devices into an NHS pilot, commissioned by the National Institute for Health Research , to test the ability of SWT’s technology to reduce the chance of one patient infecting another through the use of imperfectly-cleaned surgical instruments.

This is in support of the NIHR contract “Combined ultrasonically activated water stream and novel disinfectant for vCJD decontamination of re-usable medical instruments (PR-R17-0916-23005)”. We aim to improve the ability of NHS Hospitals and Sterile Service Departments to decrease the chance of one patient passing onto another the infective agents (prions) associated with ‘variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease’ (vCJD). Prions are extremely tough and readily attach to stainless steel surfaces, and so technology and protocols that eliminate them, whilst not damaging the medical equipment being decontaminated are being studied. Furthermore, if the technology were in routine use and capable of removing prions, then this cleaning technology would also improve the removal of other infective agents such as bacteria and viruses.

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