Clinell offers a great choice of convenient cleaning and disinfection wipe products that are highly effective and efficient at preventing infection.  This type of wipe is easy to use and innovative when it comes to cleaning in a healthcare setting.  Clinell wipes have been designed to offer medical professionals with an effective solution that has been verified by solid clinical evidence.  

Considerations For Use

There are some key points to consider when using disinfectant wipes in order for them to be effective and ensure environmental decontamination.  Failure to do so could result in elevated costs, contamination and therefore the safety of staff and patients could be compromised. 

Formula Efficacy

The wipe substrate and the liquid formula within both contribute to the efficacy when it comes to the ability to kill microorganisms.  

Absorption can become an issue for poorly produced wipes similarly to regular dry cloths and disinfectant combinations.  The chemical interaction between the liquid formula and the wipe substrate have to be balanced in order to be effective.  

As a result, the wipe eluate (liquid) of a pre-impregnated wipe should be tested to accurately predict the wipe’s efficacy and performance.

Clinically Relevant Microorganisms

It is worth noting that standard efficacy tests can be used to support more generalised claims including ‘kills 99.99% of bacteria’.  However, these tests do not produce results against all bacteria and are often only tested against as little as 3 species to substantiate such a claim.  

Surface Compatibility

Some surfaces must be disinfected frequently and while medical devices and equipment are built to tolerate damage, unsuitable disinfectants could cause irreparable, costly damage.

To improve their efficacy or stabilise their formulation, several disinfectants utilise harsh chemicals such as chlorine, alcohol, and amine derivatives. These compounds can have an impact on the disinfectant's material compatibility and cause surface degradation.

Compatibility testing can provide peace of mind and validate safety for use on common healthcare materials such as metals, plastics and rubbers.  Failure to meet compatibility requirements might result in fissures that serve as a reservoir for pathogens, allowing them to resist disinfection.

Contact Time

The killing ability of a liquid disinfectant, like those found in wet wipes, is governed by contact time and test conditions.  

What Is Contact Time?

Contact time refers to the length of time a surface needs to remain wet with a disinfectant in order to significantly reduce microorganisms also known as a 3-log reduction.  A 3-log reduction reduces the number of microorganisms by 99.9%.  The higher the log reduction, the more effective the product is at disinfecting and reducing the number of microorganisms and usually depends on the length of time the disinfectant remains on a surface.  Observing the contact time ensures a surface is effectively disinfected.  This can vary depending on the product and contact times can range anywhere between 10 seconds and 10 minutes.  For this reason, disinfectant products should include instructions for use.  

Determining Contact Time

Contact time will be determined by the manufacturer and is largely based in the microbiological testing conducted on the product following standard testing procedures e.g. EN16615 - a quantitative test method for determining the bactericidal and yeasticidal activity of hospital-grade disinfectant wipes.

Why Is Contact Time Important And Where Can I Find More Information About It?

Whilst all disinfectant products are designed to kill microorganisms, each chemical formulation can be different.  Therefore, appropriate contact times with surfaces must be adhered to, to ensure that the product can effectively reduce the number of microorganisms and the risk of transmission.  

Information regarding contact time should be clearly stated on the packaging or label of the product and will usually feature several contact time recommendations.  Some organisms may be more difficult to kill than others and may require multiple contact times, depending on the formulation used.  

For Example: a disinfectant may have a recommended contact time for 30 seconds for Norovirus, but a 60 second contact time for Hepatitis B.  In this case, the longest contact time should be followed because there would be a wide range of microorganisms on a surface.  

What If A Long Contact Time Is Required?

Products requiring a longer contact time, may require you to reapply the disinfectant multiple times so that the surface can stay wet for the correct duration.  This may not be especially  practical because surfaces in such environments will often require a quick and easy process.  It is worth bearing this in mind when choosing a disinfectant product to ensure the contact times are achievable.  

Can Contact Time Be Influenced?

High Temperatures, Low Humidity & Airflow - It may be difficult for disinfectants to maintain a longer contact time in conditions with high temperatures, low humidity and airflow.  Disinfectants with a high alcohol content will be influenced greatly by these factors because of their fast evaporation rate.  If a disinfectant dries before the met contact time, reapplication will be necessary.  

Clean Surface - A clean surface is necessary for a disinfectant to work effectively. Some disinfectants cannot penetrate biological matter, whilst others can clean and disinfect at the same time.  This makes them a little more practical and time effective compared to those capable of disinfection only. 

Wet Surface - A surface must remain wet for the appropriate amount of time as stated by the manufacturer.  If this does not occur, then a surface may not be disinfected adequately.  

Overall, Clinell disinfection wipes provide a fast and effective solution for preventing transmission that can be used across a wide range of medical settings and healthcare environments.  Bear in mind products with longer contact times to keep the amount of time spent on cleaning low.  Choosing the right products is essential, look for short contact times and products that claim to kill at least 99.99% of bacteria.  You can shop our range of Clinell cleansing and disinfecting wipes and products here.   

Post By Kelly