During a routine screening in 2010, personnel at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in North Carolina discovered Bacillus cereus bacteria in samples dispensed by their machine, the Intellifill IV. "To our knowledge, this is the first published report of a pharmacy robot being contaminated with Bacillus with resultant contamination of intravenous drug product," the report's authors write.
Bacillus is a potentially harmful bacterium that is resistant to many commonly used disinfectants, including alcohol.
Personnel discovered the contamination through quality assurance measures recommended by the manufacturer before any patients were harmed by the contaminated drugs. The implications of contaminated intravenous products can be serious, including potentially life-threatening bloodstream infections. While any adverse events were avoided, the investigation into how the machine became contaminated suggests that the current cleaning and maintenance recommendations may need to be strengthened.
The investigators traced the contamination to the machine's washing station and the tubing associated with it. Because this area is not considered a sterile part of the robot, the manufacturer does not specify a cleaning procedure for these parts beyond regular "fogging" with alcohol, using a spray bottle to clean inaccessible parts.
"To prevent other users of Intellifill IV from experiencing the same problem, the manufacturer should consider establishing a formal procedure for cleaning and maintaining the washing station, with more detailed recommendations to change the drain tube, the container, and possibly the washing station itself," the authors write. "In addition, it is reasonable to expand existing quality assurance recommendations to include surface testing of the washing station and air sampling in the center of the compartment. Last, using the robot in the pharmacy's clean room could further decrease the risk of contamination."
The findings stress the importance of routine screening of medication prepared by robotic dispensers, which are increasingly used in hospitals. "Quality assurance methods are critical to ensure ongoing patient safety," the authors write.
David Cluck, John C. Williamson, Marty Glasgo, Daniel Diekema, Robert Sherertz, "Bacterial Contamination of an Automated Pharmacy Robot Used for Intravenous Medication Preparation." Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology 33:5 (May 2012).
Published through a partnership between the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America and The University of Chicago Press, Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology provides original, peer-reviewed scientific articles for anyone involved with an infection control or epidemiology program in a hospital or healthcare facility. ICHE is ranked 15 out of 140 journals in its discipline in the latest Journal Citation Reports from Thomson Reuters.
SHEA is a professional society representing more than 2,000 physicians and other healthcare professionals around the world with expertise in healthcare epidemiology and infection prevention and control. SHEA's mission is to prevent and control healthcare-associated infections and advance the field of healthcare epidemiology. The society leads this field by promoting science and research and providing high-quality education and training in epidemiologic methods and prevention strategies. SHEA upholds the value and critical contributions of healthcare epidemiology to improving patient care and healthcare worker safety in all healthcare settings www.shea-online.org.
Shannon Murphy | EurekAlert!
Hunting pathogens at full force
22.03.2017 | Helmholtz-Zentrum für Infektionsforschung
A 155 carat diamond with 92 mm diameter
22.03.2017 | Universität Augsburg
Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.
The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.
Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...
Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.
Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...
In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...
Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to simulate these confined natural conditions in artificial vesicles for the first time. As reported in the academic journal Small, the results are offering better insight into the development of nanoreactors and artificial organelles.
Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to...
20.03.2017 | Event News
14.03.2017 | Event News
07.03.2017 | Event News
22.03.2017 | Materials Sciences
22.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
22.03.2017 | Materials Sciences