During In the current scenario COVID-19 pandemic, two of the most critical parts are protecting patients and providing clinically beneficial ultrasound machine imaging services. That means you must be able to offer safe scans and keep your Equipment clean.
To safely provide lung ultrasounds to COVID-19-positive patients, the experts offered these recommendations.
Practice Social Distancing:
Be sure you’re taking as many steps as possible to keep patients separated. Space seats in your waiting room at least 6 feet apart. Schedule appointments at variable intervals. Some previously published guidance has recommended spacing patients out every 30 minutes instead of every 15 minutes. And, be sure you keep tabs on how much time you’re spending with every patient.
Get Rooms Ready:
Before you see your first patient:
- Ensure the ultrasound room has been thoroughly clean.
- Wipe down all surfaces and Equipment with a low-level disinfectant.
- Remove unnecessary accessories, the experts recommended, and switch out fabric chairs for ones that can easily wipe down with a disinfectant.
Cleaning goes beyond the couches and beds. Your ultrasound transducers and cables must be cleaned and disinfected between every patient. Use a low- to intermediate-disinfectant to clean the transducers used for lung ultrasound, and be sure your staff wears gloves and performs the
Proper hand hygiene when cleaning and disinfecting the Equipment.
If possible, the experts said, single out one ultrasound machine only for patients with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 cases. Limit the number of transducers you keep out, keeping some safely reserved in cabinets.
Use Single-Use Gel Packets:
When imaging a patient with a suspected or confirmed COVID-19 case, the experts said, use single-use, nonsterile gel packets for external ultrasound exams. If those packets aren’t available, you can use the , jell bottle for external exams only. Do not refill or heat the bottles, they advised.
When examining a patient, keep one hand clean for patient interactions. Use the other indicators – the “semi-clean one” – to dispense gel and take care of different tasks, such as typing and adding information to the electronic health record.
Wear Personal Protective Equipment (PPE):
Lastly – and importantly – wear PPE to protect both yourself and your patients. Put on a surgical face mask before entering the room or any care area, and use a respirator mask, such as an N95, for procedures that generate aerosol, the experts recommended. Anyone touching the ultrasound equipment should wear gloves and practice good hand hygiene before and after patient visits. should also be followed for removing PPE or if any infected surfaces have been touching If, as a clinician, you are at increased health risk due to the outbreak, don’t perform ultrasound exams, the experts advised.
Disinfection and decontamination Different between
Equipment disinfection, on the other hand, contains disinfection as well as a few more steps. May be break down Cleansing into the following types:
- Low-level disinfection
- Intermediate-level disinfection
- High-level disinfection
Ultrasound machine cleaning After Use
Always proceed to learn about the correct cleaning techniques for the ultrasound system and transducer you’re using. Monitors, Keyboards, cables, and other Equipment (even if not directly with the Patient) must also be maintained and cleaned regularly. According to surveys, various equipment surfaces and accessories are frequently ignored and only cleaned weekly.
Because they contain electromechanical devices, prolonged exposure to dust and humidity will reduce the ultrasound equipment’s efficacy, risking its reliability and performance.
How to clean and take care of an ultrasound machine?
As with all medical Equipment, ultrasound machines need regular maintenance and Cleaning, even when not used frequently. Some practices may use their units twenty or more times per day, while other rules might only fire them up few times a week. No matter if your machine is power on or off, there’s wear and tear and maintenance that need to be done to make sure that ultrasound images are of the very highest quality.
Cleaning and Disposal
The first thing you need to do is to read the manual. Certain manufacturers have particular cleaning protocols for users to follow. Specific issues may arise where the unit can’t be decontaminated and must dispose of as biohazardous waste. If the team’s inside is exposed to bodily fluids carrying transmissible pathogens, must remove it from service immediately.
This means the complete eradication or irreversible deactivation of all microbial forms, including spores and prions. While steaming and autoclaving can be used with fluids, gas sterilization using gases such as ethylene oxide is a better alternative for sensitive Equipment? It is mandatory for postsurgical uses.
Air Filter, trackballs, keyboards, and connections must be regularly cleaned and maintained to the manufacturer’s specifications. So you can see, the care and maintenance are exacting, and practices small and large must follow the directions for Cleaning and ultrasound maintenance strictly. Instead of training all ultrasound personnel to do the cleaning and maintenance, many practices employ an outside service with knowledgeable, certified technicians to make sure that their machines are in top condition at all times. Contacting an ultrasound repair and maintenance service will ensure that your units give the best images with minimal downtime.
Use The Machine Properly
Correct Use of the machine will help keep it in good condition and avoid many problems. Untrained or improper usage can damage vital systems and reduce the machine’s efficiency. Prevent others and yourself from pounding on the keys or handling the trackball aggressively. Hitting a key too hard won’t break it the first time, but it will wear down and eventually break over time. Don’t pull on the cords and cables improperly; always grab them as close to the connection as possible. Avoid rolling over the chords and lines as this pinches and can break the wires inside.
Clean The Machine Daily
Ultrasound machines and their related peripherals and systems need regular cleaning for optimal performance. Parts of the ultrasound, such as the CPU, are made of electromechanical components, and that means two things. They are adversely affected by dust, and they attract dust—big time. Be sure to wipe the machine down for dust at the end of each shift.
It doesn’t take long for dust to collect and find its way into the machine’s critical components, causing difficulties, even fire. Wiping down peripheral devices like the transducer probe and patient physiology wires is also necessary daily. The manufacturer typically recommends Cleaning and sanitizing techniques for the transducers, as well as specific products. Because they come into contact with patients, they must be clean thoroughly and daily.
Give The Transducer Extra Attention
As mentioned above, the transducer comes into contact with patients, so it is essential to clean it. The transducer is what the technician rubs on the patient or inserts into the patient’s orifice, so the image is made, and without it, there will be no ultrasound image to look at
Examine the pins on the probe connector first. Deformed nails can cause damage to the system’s probe connector board, which can then bring injury to another probe when inserted into that board. As damaged examinations are carried around and faulty connector boards continue to bend pins on other investigations, this can cascade throughout a department. After that, inspect the cable connection for any frayed ends or exposed wires. Although the risk of electrocution is low, don’t take any chances.
How to Clean an Ultrasound Machine Probe
The terms ‘pre-cleaning and ‘cleaning’ are often used interchangeably by healthcare staff. The cleaning process improved when the probe is cleaned correctly, per the American Institute for Ultrasound in Medicine (AIUM), which states that “proper transducer preparation is vital.” 1 If you omit the cleaning stage or do it incorrectly, the complete disinfection or sterilization procedure will risk.
How do I properly clean intracavity probes?
Cleaning internal probes advised as follows:
After each examination, clean the transducers with soap and water or quaternary ammonium (a low-level disinfectant) sprays or wipes. After removing the transducer cover (if applicable), rinse the transducer with running water to remove any remaining gel or dirt. For anything other than wiping or spray cleaning, the transducers must be removed from the ultrasound scanner.
- Clean the transducer thoroughly with a
- a damp gauze pad or other soft cloth and a small amount of mild,
- Non-abrasive liquid soap (household dishwashing liquid is ideal).
- Depending on the shape of the particular
- transducer, consider using a small brush, especially for cracks and areas of angulation.
Let’s break it down into steps:
- Disassemble (if there is a needle guide)
- Remove the probe cover
- Clean probe immediately by using a low lint cloth and pre-cleaning solution listed in the ultrasound manufacturers’ IFU.
- Rinse with tap water
- Air dry or dry with a cloth/towel. It is vital to complete the drying process. Residual water, like dirt and gel, can slow down the disinfection process. Water can dilute the disinfectant, whereas the former can act as a barrier. Always test HLD solution for MRC (Minimum Required Concentration) before reprocessing to ensure efficacy.
- Is it true that a probe cover or condom can remove the requirement for Cleaning?
No. According to the FDA: “Please note that the Use of sheathes has no bearing on the type of transducer processing that suggested Sheathes can fail during Use, and the level of contamination that results may not be visible.” 10 Whether
Reprocessing the ultrasound transducer by automated or manual high-level disinfection, Cleaning required. Use a pre-cleaned probe to start the cleaning procedure.
Disinfection Is Very Important
The world that an ultrasound machine inhabits can be a messy one filled with bodily fluids. Emergency rooms, clinics, and hospitals are places with a high likelihood that there will be body fluids contacted, splashed, or spilled about. If the machine is contaminated with such fluids, disinfecting it or clean it. If any part of the machine comes into contact with any liquids, wipe it down immediately with only OEM-approved cleaners.
After wiping the machine down, spray a cloth with the disinfectant and wipe every surface down completely. Especially important for the user interface systems and monitor. Those are areas that the technician will touch daily, so eliminate any chance of contracting an infectious disease and follow all procedures related to cleaning biological spills.
Will remove most bacteria, some fungi, some viruses, but not all of them. It May does not affect resistant microorganisms such as mycobacteria. Some chemicals used are quaternary ammonia salts, hypochlorite solution fluid, phenols, thymol, or fast sodium hydroxide.
Will wipe out most active microorganisms across a broad spectrum. It May not affect large numbers of bacterial spores or prions. High-level disinfectants include ortho-phthalaldehyde and other aldehydes, peracetic acid, and high concentration hydrogen peroxide. Mandated as a minimum for such uses as transvaginal or transabdominal ultrasounds.
Clean The Air Filters Regularly
Keep the Ultrasound Machine system cool and prevent it from overheating. It comes with a fan and vents, and those vents need protection from dust with air filters. That same dust we mentioned before will get inside the CPU and cause damage if the filters are left unchecked. Check and clean the air filters weekly or as required by the manufacturer. If they are full of dust, they have done their job but can’t do it anymore. If it’s dirty, cleaning it with a vacuum cleaner or soap and water will usually do the trick. Refer to the user manual for the recommended way to clean them. It’s always a good idea to keep a backup filter on hand so you can let the dirty one dry out thoroughly if you wash it with water.
Take Precautions During Transport
When moving the machine, take precautions. They are designed to be mobile, but they can still fall over and damage the components. When moving it, scan the path ahead for anything that can get caught under the wheels, causing it to tip. Walk at a steady pace and don’t let the ultrasound machine vibrate or shake. Overly uneven floors or paths will jar the electronics within or make the transducer fall to the floor, damaging it.