It is not possible, nor desirable, that we become an increasingly wasteful medical society. Govermental regulators and manufacturers have already pushed the pendulum well toward the emphasis on disposable accessory use, with little peer-review published data to support their view. A few endoscopy unit directors have fortunately taken up the challenge to demonstrate that the use of reusable accessories and the reprocessing of disposable accessories can be done safely, and can generate significant cost savings. These studies have already begun to stimulate manufacturers to once again develop reusable accessories designed with simplified reprocessing directions. On the other hand, practitioners who use accessories must be willing to demonstrate their ability to do so safely. The studies reviewed here highlight that this high standard of accessory reprocessing requires well-trained, qualified, and supervised cleaning and reprocessing technicians and an open, supportive relationship between the endoscopy unit staff and the institutional reuse-infection control committee. As a practical matter, the requirements and guidelines for accessory reprocessing may soon be mandated for the reprocessing of endoscopes. Certainly, if an endoscopy unit can safely and reliably clean and sterilize endoscopic accessories, it has a great advantage when it comes to cleaning and high-level disinfection of more complex devices, such as a flexible endoscope.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||11|
|Journal||Gastrointestinal Endoscopy Clinics of North America|
|State||Published - Jan 1 2000|
ASJC Scopus subject areas