Background Chemical disinfectants have traditionally been used to clean pharmaceutical facilities to ensure acceptable microbiological conditions. However, the use of such agents are costly, time-consuming and environmentally undesirable. Exchanging the disinfectants with sterile water and composite fibre cloths was tested in a class A hospital pharmacy compounding environment with regard to their effects on microbiological contamination.
Purpose The goal of the project was to establish whether an acceptable level of microbiological cleanliness could be upheld in the production facility when cleaning with sterile water and composite fibre cloths instead of traditional chemical disinfectants.
Material and methods The sterile chemical disinfectants used were an alternating regimen of Klercide Quat/Biguanide, Amine, Sporicidal low residue peroxide and neutral detergent, provided by Ecolab (St Paul, MN, USA). The alternative system, consisting of sterile water and composite fibre cloths, was provided by De forenede dampvaskerier (Viima, Maribo, Denmark). Klercide Sterile 70% ethanol (Ecolab, St Paul, MN, USA) was used for disinfection of grade A between each production, and for surface disinfection of materials to be transferred into grade A.
The effect of cleaning methods was compared for four pharmaceutical isolators and two biological safety cabinets, all of class A grade. The quality of the microbiological conditions was monitored with glove prints, settle plates and contact plates (Tryptone Soya Agar, Oslo University Hospital, Oslo, Norway).
The rate of contaminated tests (≥1 cfu/plate) for glove prints, settle plates and contact plates in class A in a 24 month period before and after the change in cleaning method were compared.
Results The rate of contaminated tests were comparable for the 24 month period before and after the change in cleaning method. The rate of positive tests (≥1 cfu/plate) were for glove prints 5.3% before (n=1562) and 5.0% after (n=1584), settle plates 3.2% before (n=809) and 3.0% after (n=824) and contact plates 2.7% before (n=807) and 1,5% after (n=817).
Conclusion The level of microbiological contamination in a class A hospital pharmacy compounding environment is maintained when cleaning with sterile water and composite fibre cloths, compared to traditional cleaning with chemical disinfectants.
References and/or acknowledgements None.
No conflict of interest.
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