A recent 6-week study conducted by ALS Global Laboratories on PTS (Patient Transport Service) Ambulances in the UK has revealed that when fitting an AIRsteril unit the average reduction in surface contamination is 95% and the average reduction in airborne contamination is 81% when compared to the “control” vehicles.
The comparison testing took place on 19 ambulances, 9 fitted with AIRsteril units and 10 “control” ambulances without AIRsteril installed. The study used a combination of air and surface testing (settle plates and swabbing) and an identical cleaning regime for all 19 vehicles.
Ambulances represent a front line in the NHS but have been highlighted as a potential source of cross infection, putting both patients and ambulance crews at risk. The risk of contamination begins the moment a crew member enters a vehicle and increases with each patient transferred. Ambulance personnel can protect themselves with appropriate PPE, but a combination of the confined space, poor ventilation and level of occupation contribute to a scenario of elevated risk, with increasing air and surface contamination. The risk is even higher if a patient has a respiratory infection such as Coronavirus, or Tuberculosis.
An ambulance interior cannot be easily disinfected on site or between transfers. Rather than rely on sporadic manual deep cleaning or airborne treatments such as hydrogen peroxide fogging, an intrinsically safe CND (Continuous Non-depleting Disinfection) process has been developed that reduces microbial contamination levels and the risk of infection to both patients and staff without any changes to vehicle operation – AIRsteril.
During this study the AIRsteril units worked continuously when the vehicles were running but turned off a few minutes after engine shut down, due to battery constraints the AIRsteril can only work when the vehicle is running in PTS Ambulances.
The results from the testing showed that the control vehicles were significantly less hygienic than the ambulances treated by AIRsteril:
Surface contamination – a 1.32 log10cfu/cm2 reduction equating to a 95.26% decrease from control vehicle levels when using the AIRsteril unit.
Airborne contamination – A 0.73 log10cfu/cm2 reduction equating to an 81.45% decrease from control vehicle levels when using the AIRsteril unit.
It is worth noting that much higher levels of reduction in microbial levels, particularly in the levels of airborne contamination could be achieved if the AIRsteril units were kept running 24/7, this would be possible in emergency ambulances which have auxiliary batteries with power hook up.
Being able to increase vehicle hygiene without any change in cleaning regimes is a big plus with the NHS, as in response to the pandemic they vastly increased their cleaning spend including regular Hydrogen Peroxide fogging which is not advised by several major bodies such as WHO, CDC and FDA due to safety concerns.
AIRsteril technology has been successfully used in NHS ambulances since 2015 as well as in EOC (Emergency Operation Control) centres. More recently CorrMed has deployed AIRsteril at both the Alexandra Hospital in Redditch and the Worcestershire Royal Hospital in Worcester to help reduce Covid outbreaks across a number of hospital bays, thus protecting patients and staff.
To find out more about AIRsteril which is supplied by CorrMed, please follow the links within this article or visit www.corrmed.com/airsteril.
To book a site visit or AIRsteril demo do get in touch with our team today.