Flexible endoscopes are still predominantly reusable devices. During their use, they can become heavily contaminated with the patient’s microbial flora. To ensure patient safety, meticulous cleaning and high-level disinfection is needed to guarantee clean and safe use on subsequent patients. Continuously working to improve patient safety and infection prevention is therefore at the forefront of endoscopists, nurses and reprocessing personnel’s focus.
“Infections caused by endoscopes can have an incredible impact both on patients and staff,” commented Prof. Marco Bruno, head of gastroenterology and hepatology, Erasmus University Medical Centre, Rotterdam. “I have had personal experience with infections at my hospital, involving 30 patients. However, solutions have been created to improve patient safety and infection prevention, over the years.”1
The importance of drying in endoscope reprocessing