The Dangers of Healthcare Acquired Infections

Healthcare Acquired Infections (or HAIs) are those transmitted to patients who are receiving treatment for other illnesses or surgeries. They occur in hospitals and treatment centers. Although HAIs have been recognized as an unfortunate risk for decades, awareness and prevention are now being prioritized.

How big of a challenge do HAIs pose?
In the United States, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) estimate that 17.9 million Healthcare Acquired Infections account for 99,000 deaths each year. In Canada, estimates suggest that one in nine patients will pick up an infection and those 220,000+ HAI cases lead to more than 8,000 deaths. The European Centre for Disease Control estimates 3.8 million HAI cases each year across all EU nations.

Those are stark numbers, but they don’t have to be. Many Healthcare Acquired Infections could be prevented by the use of better technology and procedures.
Boy in Hospital (HAI)
HAIs Increase Hospital Costs

HAIs Lead to Increased Cost of Care

In addition to the medical challenges associated with HAIs, there is also a tremendous financial burden. That’s because each Healthcare Acquired Infection brings significant direct and indirect expenses for the treating facility. Direct costs can include re-treatment and continuing treatment expenses, as well as regulatory fines. Indirect costs are harder to calculate, but in some cases might be even more damaging. They include a loss of reputation and a decrease in new admissions.

Obviously, these concerns are secondary to patient care, but it would be naïve to overlook the role finances play in modern medicine. Patients can’t be provided a high level of care if a facility isn’t profitable or solvent. HAIs are an anchor that drags the bottom line down again and again. With a small investment in smarter technology and processes – an investment that represents a tiny fraction of what HAIs cost medical facilities – the incidence of new infections can be greatly reduced.

A Smarter Approach to Disinfection

Studies have shown repeatedly that hospital surfaces are not being cleaned and disinfected thoroughly enough with the use of chemical genocides. In fact, it is often the case that less than 50% of a room is clean enough for care or surgery even after chemicals have been applied. This poses significant problems, particularly in an environment where a virus like COVID-19 can survive for 72 hours on steel or plastic.

Luckily, there is a solution. Using the right kind of UV light – and specifically at wavelengths between 200-280 nm – you can inactivate bacteria and viruses (including SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV). In addition, ozone can be utilized in low concentrations as an airborne disinfectant.

By using these two technologies together, your facility can drastically lower the incidence of Healthcare Acquired Infections. How powerful could they be? Unpublished studies show a 99.9% deactivation rate for COVID-19, making it far more valuable than chemical surface cleaners.
Operating Room
HAIs Increase Hospital Costs

Your UVC and Ozone Global Disinfection Solution

The numbers on HAIs show that traditional processes aren’t working well enough when it comes to medical disinfection. It’s time to try new types of technology like the COMVAT DUO₃ (pictured left).

The International Ultraviolet Association (IUVA) asserts that new processes may be the key to reducing the transmission of infections – and particularly COVID-19 and other related illnesses – in medical settings. Contact us today so we can help you implement these systems into your facility to reduce HAIs for your staff, your patients, and your bottom line.

Learn more about the COMVAT DUO₃