ACIPC 2017 Educational Symposium watch now 'On Demand'

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Dr Cathryn Murphy's presentation provides great insight into global guidelines and standards in ultrasound probe reprocessing, with a local focus on the latest ACIPC-ASUM guidelines.

The unprecedented surge in ultrasound (U/S) use across specialities and in specific procedures is a prime example of emerging infection risks. Australia’s 2017 multi-jurisdictional outbreak of Burkholderia cynocephali bacteraemia
and infection attributed to contaminated sterile gel used for central line insertion provides IPs with a salient reminder of the risk of ultrasound-related infections and the importance of proper U/S probe reprocessing.

The presentation introduces a new population-level study, the first of its kind. Conducted by Health Protection Scotland and NHS Scotland, it demonstrates a greater risk of positive microbiological reports and antibiotic prescriptions within 30 days for adults who had undergone semi‑invasive ultrasound procedures (SIUP) when high level disinfection was not used as standard of care.

The symposium emphasises the need for infection preventionists and sonographers to work together as a joint mission to minimise the risk of cross-contamination for all ultrasound patients. Expansion of ultrasound as a diagnostic tool means that a broad spectrum of clinical staff are involved in ultrasound probe reprocessing. They require a level of training and knowledge to ensure best practice in ultrasound probe reprocessing.

Concurrently, healthcare delivery has evolved. New and revised procedures, many of which are often able to be delivered in settings beyond the traditional scope of an infection control and prevention program, are emerging. Hospital buying groups are seeking less expensive options for both capital equipment and consumables.

As a result, the contemporary infection preventionist faces the almost impossible task of trying to be aware of all possible infection risks across the system and delivering evidence-based solutions to prevent them.



Dr Cathryn Murphy RN. B. Photog, MPH, PhD, CIC..jpgDr Cathryn Murphy RN. B. Photog, MPH, PhD, CIC. 
- Chief Executive Officer & Creative Director, Infection Control Plus Pty Ltd 
- Honorary Adjunct Associate Professor, Faculty of Health Sciences & Medicine, Bond University


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Learning Objectives.

The purpose of this presentation is to highlight these risks and provide appropriate solutions. On completion attendees will be:

  • able to appreciate the risk, mechanisms and magnitude of U/S-related infections
  • familiar with the characteristics of multiple global U/S related outbreaks over the past two decades
  • aware of the current requirements of Standard 3 regarding reprocessing of re-usable medical devices and
  • able to access and apply the principles of the new national Guidelines for Reprocessing Ultrasound Transducers recently issued in Australia by the Australasian Society for Ultrasound in Medicine (ASUM), jointly with the Australasian College for Infection Prevention and Control (ACIPC)
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