Infection control precautions are an essential part of care home and hospital operations.
As well as keeping patients, staff and visitors safe, preventing infection will aid facilities to run smoothly – without the strain on staffing, resources and budgets that outbreaks can cause.
Chances are, you consider capital equipment to be an important part of your infection control armoury. Bedpan washer disinfectors and medical pulp macerators, in particular, are key to keeping HCAIs at bay (specifically those which spread via human waste, such as clostridium difficile and MRSA).
However, sluice room equipment can only underpin your infection control strategy if it is:
- Used appropriately
- Fit for the purpose
- Kept in peak operating condition
- Fully functional and available when needed.
If any of these factors are permitted to fall by the wayside, even the most technologically advanced machinery could fail (let alone legacy items that you’ve had for a long time).
Asset management is key to making sure that your equipment is working well, for the maximum amount of time and providing the protection you require.
Here’s how it works…
1. Planned, Preventative Maintenance
To maximise the uptime of your machines, planned maintenance is essential. By scheduling maintenance work in line with manufacturer recommendations, you can avoid many service issues, such as worn parts that will eventually fall into disrepair.
If your machines are currently working well, you may regard regular maintenance as an unnecessary, recurrent expense – but this couldn’t be further from the truth.
One-off repairs are significantly more expensive that regular maintenance (we’ve calculated the true cost of breakdowns here). This is before you consider that unexpected machine failures will lead to logistical issues for clinicians (such as finding alternative waste disposal options), as well as increased infection risk (when your usual infection control procedure is suddenly unavailable).
DDC Dolphin are specialists in the maintenance and repair of all brands of sluice machines. Our knowledge of each model means that we can carefully map out the service life of consumable parts, ensuring that they are replaced in a timely manner.
- Provide an asset register, detailing the callout, repair and condition of machines over the last 11 years.
- Identify key areas of repair such as lid repairs and solenoids, along with advice of how best to manage these issues in-house.
- Set up internal alerts for machines that have a high number of reactive cases or repairs, so we can advise you and investigate promptly.
2. Sluice Machines at End of Life
All machinery has a service life. If you maintain your equipment proactively, it will certainly last longer, and at a better cost – but like all assets, we can’t expect them to last forever.
By having a clear idea of the life expectancy of your bedpan washers and pulp macerators, you can plan for the logistics of their replacement. For example, un-plumbing and moving machines out of your facility will need careful arrangement, so you can ensure the associated infection risk is managed.
DDC Dolphin can help you to prepare and handle your machinery’s end-of-life.
- Dispose of your machines responsibly, by making sure they are uninstalled and discarded safely, as well as in an environmentally conscious way.
- Provide an asset replacement program over 3 - 5 years, including a scoring system to justify renewal. We can then provide a rough idea on cost to replace units over this period, including budget-friendly finance solutions.
3. Upgrading Your Sluice Machines
Even if you think a machine has served you well, replacing equipment like-for-like isn’t always the best solution.
Sluice room technology is constantly evolving. By considering the latest innovations, you can be confident that you have the right assets to suit your progressing needs - potentially over many years to come.
DDC Dolphin are your infection control experts. We’ll help you navigate a sluice machine upgrade by:
- Auditing your current solution, to make sure it’s still fit for purpose – and provide guidance on a more appropriate solution if it’s not.
- Assisting with scale management, to ensure that the changing needs of your facility are always considered, and any new equipment will be able to support it.
- Provide staff training and resources, so new equipment can be quickly, easily and effectively adopted.
DDC Dolphin are here to help with your asset management.
With our support, you can maximise the effectiveness of sluice room equipment throughout every phase of its lifespan, so your infection control procedures can be actioned seamlessly.
We empower healthcare providers to safeguard their patients and clinicians with reliable, sustainable solutions that:
- Deliver leading-edge performance
- Increase efficiencies
- Reduce costs and carbon footprint.
Our leading-edge solutions include:
- The Pulpmatic Eco+, the most economical medical pulp macerator on the market
- The Panamatic Optima 2, a large capacity bedpan washer to cope with high demand wards or care settings
- The Hygenex Vacumatic, providing 100% hygienic, efficient and odourless waste disposal, without the risks of conventional yellow bags.
- Hygenex Eco-Friendly Maceratable & Flushable Wipes, which contain no microplastics and are fully compostable, dispersing into 100% organic matter.
You can even experience solutions without commitment.