Latest infection control Guidance for Inhalation Sedation Equipment

R A Medical Services continue to receive many enquiries with regard to infection control of equipment and breathing systems, so this article is intended as an update.

Care of hardware; Flowmeters/Miniscavs etc

The normal position of this equipment – behind the chair head -should only result in some minimal surface aerosol contamination.  This can be removed by wiping over the hard surfaces.  However, when using large surface wipes – e.g. Clinell – these should always be wrung out to remove excessive moisture levels before applying to the equipment and care must be taken to avoid obvious open areas, in order to prevent internal moisture ingress.  We do not currently recommend the use of any wipe over another.

Breathing System tubings/masks – what should I change between patients?

We have also had a significant amount of queries around this question.  The response is that everything between the Fresh Gas

Y connector and the Vacuum Y connector should be replaced between patients.  This can comprise autoclavable or disposable components – or a mix of both. 

The fresh gas hose is generally not an autoclavable item (although an autoclavable one is usually available) and again, will only suffer minimum aerosol contamination externally, whilst remaining clean internally.  This can be wiped over or washed in warm soapy water and hung to dry at the end of each days sessions.

The vacuum Y connector, 8’ vacuum hose and vacuum control block are generally treated as a ‘contaminated item’.  However, the vacuum Y connector can be autoclaved – or a disposable alternative is available.  The vacuum hose can be autoclaved – but due to the length, requires a large tray and chamber.  This could be replaced at the end of the week, being wiped over externally on a daily basis.  The vacuum control block cannot be autoclaved and should be left in situ in the AGS adapter or Miniscav™.

For any queries on the above, please contact Mrs Janet Pickles 01535 652444 or email