A shocking news report this week has brought attention to a Nottingham dental practice’s apparent breach of infection control standards. In light of this we have decided to share our infection control systems with you, as we pride ourselves in setting and maintaining exceptionally high standards of practice hygiene, which are universally recognised. Our staff have extensive knowledge in current infection control processes and regulations, and receive training updates on a regular basis. We have recently invested over £15,000 in sterilisation, including a dedicated, state of the art decontamination suite at our Nelson practice, exceeding current expected standards of infection control.
Our policies and procedures – we adhere to strict policies and procedures based on Department of Health Guidelines. Our comprehensive Decontamination Manual contains all policies and processes required to protect our patients and ourselves.
Our single use policy – our policy is to use single use instruments and equipment wherever possible, which are NEVER reused and are safely disposed of immediately after use.
Instrument sterilisation – all instruments which are not single use will undergo a strict sterilisation process. This involves carefully cleaning instruments in disinfectant, before inspecting them under a magnifying lamp to ensure they are spotlessly clean. Next the instruments are processed in a specialist clinical steriliser, where they are treated by 134 degree steam under very high pressure. Each time a batch of instruments are treated a report is retained to ensure the correct parameters were achieved to effectively sterilise them. This way we can be 100% sure that we always meet the required standard.
Hand washing – Hand washing is carefully observed. All staff are trained in NHS recognised hand washing procedures, which are carried out between each patient, and at the start and end of each clinical session, followed by disinfection with an alcohol based hand gel. Hand washing posters can be observed above dedicated hand wash facilities in each surgery.
Our clinical audits – we conduct clinical audits on our infection control standards and procedures every 6 months. Our most recent audit carried out by Lisa, one of our most senior dental nurses, gave an overall score of 97%, which can be broken down into separate areas:
Use of an online audit tool means we can ensure our high standards are being maintained, and are informed of any updates as they emerge.
Our premises – following a cleaning check list means our surgeries are spotlessly clean. Equipment and surfaces are decontaminated and disinfected carefully after every patient.
We are extremely proud to set and maintain standards of care for each and every patient that we would expect for ourselves and our own families, indeed such is our confidence in our procedures that all staff member’s children attend the practice.
If you would like to view our Practice Decontamination Manual containing our policies and procedures, or have any questions regarding hygiene standards please contact Louise Liston on 01443 812559