The one-week seminar held September 24-28 at Bayview Park Hotel in Manila familiarized doctors, nurses, medical technologists and other hospital staff about the newly-issued sterilization standards for hospitals and healthcare facilities based on international standards set by the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI) and the Joint Commission International (JCI).
The new guidelines are set to improve the quality of patient care in the country by providing a framework to achieve levels of international best practices in reprocessing reusable medical devices in the Central Sterile Supply Department (CSSD) of hospitals.
Dr. Cynthia Rosuman, Chief of DOH’s Standards Development Division said the DOH wants to institutionalize quality healthcare for patients and prevent healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) because patient safety is always the priority of hospitals. “The new classification was signed by Secretary Enrique T. Ona last July, effective August 18 this year,” Dr. Rosuman said.
Dr. Norman Lu, Regional Clinical Consultant from 3M Asia Pacific – Infection Prevention Division, meanwhile commended DOH for developing the guidelines in record time and said it was disturbing to learn that some local hospitals still practice unsterile ways of reprocessing critical surgical instruments. “That is why the DOH should conduct more training sessions and launch information campaigns in hospitals about proper disinfection and sterilization of medical devices,” Dr. Lu said.
Dr. Rosuman confirmed that the DOH is indeed stepping up training of medical professionals about the new guidelines. “That is why the DOH partnered with 3M Philippines — to better disseminate information about the new guidelines. DOH provides the facilities, while 3M provides the resource speaker and the training materials,” the DOH doctor explained.
Irene Ebarle, Clinical and Technical Consultant from 3M Philippines Infection Prevention Division hailed the creation of the DOH provision on proper disinfection and sterilization for hospitals as a milestone for both DOH and the Philippines. “The swift creation and implementation of the new sterilization standards has been very impressive. In just four months the DOH was able to finish the guidelines, and we at 3M Philippines who strongly believe in quality health care for every patient will continue to support the DOH in this endeavor,” Ebarle added.
Over two hundred doctors, nurses, medical technologists and hospital personnel from different public and private hospitals from CALABARZON attended the first and second batches of “Training on the International Standards and Best Practices for Sterilization in the Hospital Setting”.
The Department of Health concluded a similar training for hospitals in the NCR last June, and is set to conduct the same training for personnel of hospitals in Visayas and Mindanao next year. As part of 3M’s commitment to improve the level of healthcare in the country, 3M is extending a similar program to hospitals interested in learning more about sterilization and monitoring in compliance to the new DOH standards.