6 best practices from AORN's forthcoming endoscope reprocessing guidelines

The Association of periOperative Registered Nurses plans to release an update to its "Guideline for Processing Flexible Endoscopes" on Feb. 1, but the lead author of the guideline update offered a sneak peek at some of the soon-to-come best practices.

Sharon Van Wicklin, MSN, RN, senior perioperative specialist and the lead author, spoke with Periop Insider about the new guidelines. The six evidence-based practices she discussed are listed below.

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1. Record when a procedure is completed and when the cleaning is initiated.

2. Mechanically clean and process flexible endoscopes using a high-level disinfectant or a liquid chemical sterilant, or mechanically clean and sterilize, instead of the previously recommended manual soaking of endoscopes.

3. Use cleaning verification tests, not visual inspection.

4. Use a drying cabinet to store flexible endoscopes.

5. Use a team to establish a policy for maximum storage time, instead of using the five-day storage maximum previously recommended by AORN.

6. Ensure those in charge of cleaning and processing have been educated and have completed competency verification.

More articles on endoscopes:
Number of scope-related infections higher than previously reported by FDA, Senate committee finds
How to properly clean medical scopes and improve patient safety: 10 steps
FDA orders recall of 2,800 scope-cleaning machines due to infection risk

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