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How to Manage Custom Trays


Custom procedure trays provide an allowance for you to design your own tray to make sure it’s filled with surgical supplies and equipment you will require throughout your medical operations. Custom procedure trays are necessary since surgery methods may differ in particular scenarios. However, custom procedure trays are instruments that pose a danger not only to humans but also to the environment because they are not biodegradable. You must, therefore, be careful how you manage custom procedure trays s they can turn out to be detrimental to the patients, health facility staff and the hospital environment at large.

Custom procedure trays, like other hospital equipment, if not properly managed, can be highly infectious and hazardous for human health through their ability to spread diseases. Nevertheless, this infectious attribute of custom procedure trays can always be prevented through indulging carefully in hospital waste management. Here is a brief overview of how custom procedure trays can be effectively managed.

• Microwave treatment

Microwave treatment is one of the numerous medical waste disposal techniques that could result in achieving the best possible results in matters regarding proper management of custom trays. This method uses heat to decontaminate waste such as an old custom procedure tray before disposal. The waste management system can only work with custom procedure trays and other solid medical equipment since the moisture in the microwave works wonders in ensuring deep penetration. Therefore, most types of waste required to be managed in this manner, including custom trays, should be shredded and mixed with water so as to achieve the best results.

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How to Manage Custom Tray


Image is from Medline

The healthcare sector contributes a lot to the pollution of the environment which goes a long way in affecting the general human health. It contributes paradoxically to a myriad of environmental problems while concurrently forcing people to deal with the harmful effects it poses. This is due to the technology application in the industry as well as products and various applications. A custom tray, for instance, is one instrument that poses a danger not only to the environment but also to humans since it’s not biodegradable. This fact makes the health sector to maintain their standards of the sustainable organization.

You must, therefore, be careful how you manage a custom tray as it can turn out to be detrimental to the health facility staff, the patients themselves and not to forget the hospital environment. Among the first issues you could consider is the creation of awareness among the hospital staff and the general public when it comes to the extent of damage a custom tray, among other hospital equipment, can pose when not disposed of properly. The various technicians and sanitary workers must be trained properly to know how to combat the menace.

Among other hospital equipment, a custom tray, if not properly managed, can be hazardous and highly infectious for human health by its ability to spread diseases. The infectious attribute of this equipment can always be avoided by taking up the hospital waste management carefully. Here’s a quick overview of how a custom tray can be managed.

  • Chemical treatment

This is one of the most effective on-site management for a custom tray. It usually works to deactivate and decontaminate among others, a custom tray, instead of packaging and taking them to another facility for the management. Often while using a custom tray in the theater, there is going to spills of body fluids in it. This means, if you carry them over to other places with the body fluids in them, you run the risk of causing infections to the patients and staff in the facility. The best way to handle it in such a situation is to treat it not far from where you have used it. In some other instances, you may need to shred the tray first before you can treat it with chemicals.

Chemicals including chlorine, sodium hydroxide, or calcium hydroxide can be especially handy in doing this. Worth noting is that these products can sometimes produce undesired by-products and off-gas VOC’s when used in the treatment of custom trays among other equipment. As such, this is a process that has to be executed by knowledgeable staff to avoid creating, even more, problems to the environment and hospital staff. If you deem this method as not comfortable, you can opt for solidifying agents that will solidify the liquid in the custom tray and after that taking the waste to your medical waste removal professionals for disposal.

  • Microwave treatment

This method uses heat to decontaminate waste like an old custom tray before disposal. The waste management system can only work with the custom tray and other solid medical equipment since the moisture in the microwave works magic in ensuring deep penetration. So, most types of waste that need to be managed in this manner, including a custom tray, should be shredded and mixed with water so as to get an excellent result

There are numerous medical waste disposal techniques you can take up to manage a custom tray. Try the above for best results.


Proper Storage for Custom Surgical Trays


Image is from Healthcare Purchasing News

A custom surgical tray is one of the most crucial equipment in a hospital setup. Essential as it is, this equipment should be taken care to enhance their longevity. Taking care of surgical instruments before keeping them is the surest method of protecting your tools. The ones that take care of properly last longer. Proper storage of instruments comes after you have properly cleaned them.

Preparation before storage

Preparation for storing the tray involves three levels;

  • Cleaning

This is the initial step of storing your tray. Ensure you clean all the body fluids, blood, and other tissues. Dirt like dry soil may even damage your tray or make it tough to use. After washing, rinse the tray in cold, clean water. Avoid using hot water as it can cause protein substances to coagulate. You can soak the tray in cold water mixed with an enzymatic detergent. The detergent will help in dissolving the proteins on the instrument surface as well as breaking the oils. After that, you can now clean the tray in cold water manually. If there as an alternative for manual cleaning like mechanical cleaning, you can opt for it. Normally, mechanical washing involves the use of a washing machine to wash the tray. The machine cleans through multiple levels. Cold water is for removing the debris. Then a hot water bath followed by a blow dry with hot air. Use gloves as you do the cleaning, plastic apron, eye protection and a mask.

  • Disinfecting

For high-level disinfection, both thermal are available. Boil the instrument in a 100 degrees water for some time, preferably one minute. Only some few bacterial spores don’t die during the boiling; it is imperative to remember that boiling will not sterilize equipment. Just submerge the tray into the boiling water. When you notice the temperature of the water exceeding one hundred degrees, turn down the heat so it can boil gently. After a minute, remove the instrument from the boiling water using a pair of disinfected tongs. It is important to remember here not to remove the tray in the water as it cools since it can be decontaminated.

  • Sterilizing

Sterilization does away with all microorganisms. Autoclaving is a common method of sterilizing this equipment. However, you can use dry heat or chemical sterilants.

Cleaning is meant to remove dirt and other biological material that may have been present on the tray’s surface. It is easy to clean these instruments manually or using mechanically using water, detergent, and other enzymatic materials. Cleaning it thoroughly since biological materials can remain on the surface to and be a hindrance to subsequent steps of sterilization and disinfection.

Disinfecting this equipment can be done in multiple levels including; low-level disinfection, intermediate level disinfection and high-level disinfection.

  • Low-level disinfection removes all vegetative bacteria, fungi, lipid virus and some non-lipid viruses from the tray surface in ten minutes or less.
  • Intermediate-level disinfection kills tubercle bacilli, and lipid enveloped viruses, fungus spores, and some no lipid enveloped viruses and mycobacteria.
  • High-level disinfection destroys all the organisms killed by the low and high-level disinfection levels aside from killing fungus spores

Sterilization kills all microorganisms certain chemical sterilants can be used as HLD disinfectants when used for shorter exposed durations. You can use autoclaving to do the disinfection.

After all the cleaning, disinfection, and sterilization, keep your tray in a place where they are not exposed to any more dirt and contaminants. If you don’t maintain the tray a safe place, you are going to pose a great danger in infecting the patient.

Difference Between Moist Heat and Dry Heat for Custom Trays


Image is from Medline.com

A custom tray is a medical equipment that requires you to sterilize so as to kill the bacteria and other disease-causing organisms present on the surface. If left unsterilized, the patient could be exposed to several harmful microorganisms which may end up causing more harm. As such, a custom tray has to be free from germs always and more especially during the procedure. Sterilization of a custom tray can be achieved in two ways:

• Dry heat

Despite being a method that has been used for many years, dry heat method has often been misunderstood. Unlike in moist heat sterilization method where high temperature is used in performing sterilization, here heated air is used to achieve the same. Additionally, the temperatures in this method are relatively higher than in the moist heat method. The disease-causing microorganisms are killed through the destructive oxidation process. This process helps to terminate large biomolecules such as proteins. The organism will eventually die due to the destruction of some of the most vital components of the cell. It is, however, most suitable for the equipment which is resistant to heat

• Moist heat sterilization

For moist heat sterilization, water at high-pressure level is used for sterilizing instruments like a custom tray, and the process is carried out in autoclaves. Although the temperature of steam in this method of sterilization is relatively lower than its dry heat counterpart, the pressure helps to effect sterilization properly. The moist heat destroys the structural proteins of the disease-causing organism on the surface of a custom tray. Eventually, this results in the death of the organisms on the surface of the custom tray. This method is effective in that it takes a shorter time to complete the whole sterilization process and in low temperatures too.

• Dry heat and steam heat efficacy

While you can achieve the same results in many loads, including a custom tray, with both methods, certain tasks are impossible while using a steam autoclave like loads that are hydrophobic or ones that will be damaged when exposed to moisture. As well, dry heat is useful for instruments such as a custom tray, which may experience corrosion.

Even as you can use dry heat method on a myriad of equipment, including a custom tray, it is, by no means, all purpose. Liquids, for instance, unlike a custom tray, cannot be sterilized using the method and neither can be growth media. Unlike a custom clay, dense loads are a problem too since the convection process does not penetrate them.

• Dry heat sterilizer versus steam autoclave efficiency

Although many loads like a custom tray can be sterilized by using either moist or dry heat, steam sterilizers consume less time and energy compared to dry heat. For a resistant spore to be killed by dry heat, the load in a dry heat sterilizer must be brought to 170 degrees centigrade and maintained there for as long as one hour. On the other hand, a steam autoclave only needs to be raised to 121 degrees centigrade for as short as fifteen minutes. This is because the steam is an excellent conductor of heat and is, therefore, able to permeate loads. As a result, there is significant cost saving when you use a steam heat sterilizer compared to dry heat sterilizer.

The above are some of the basic differences between dry and moist heat sterilization methods. Using either of them, ensure your equipment are properly sterilized. A custom tray is particularly one instrument you don’t want to forget to sterilize.

How to reduce set up time with custom procedure trays


Time Consolidation

Custom trays designed to surgeon specifications are time savers as well as money savers. Groups like 3M have access to some 20,000+ components, and commit to an assurance of quality. The right trays will reach you; and if they do not, it’s not going to cost you. When it’s time for surgery, all you’ve got to do is grab the pre-prepared tray and start doing your thing. The time saved in this way could very well save lives.

Advantages of Custom Trays

There are quite a few positives to consider if your division is thinking about making the move to custom trays. First, the operating costs of the theatre suite in which surgeries are performed can be substantively diminished. There’s no need for on-site sterilization. Components on trays can be sent back for re-packaging/re-sterilization in some scenarios; while in others, you can keep the equipment and send it through to be used again; though if you’re going the right route with custom trays, this likely won’t be your aim. With custom trays, you can reduce inventory–and that’s a huge savings to consider. Additionally, custom trays curtail unnecessary waste and have been substantively shown to reduce cross contamination risk.

Produce More

When you can set up for operation simply by grabbing a tray, that ultimately may save hours a week. If it only takes ten minutes to set up a tray yourself, then that’s 70 minutes a week, or 280 minutes a month–which translates to 4 hours and 40 minutes. In a year, that’s 49 hours and 20 minutes wasted setting up trays. How much money is a surgeon’s time worth? If it is only a hundred dollars, then that’s $4,933.33 wasted on a yearly basis preparing trays. These are not very productive numbers! By introducing custom trays, you can save nearly $5k a year in time alone. That is conducive to productivity. Additionally, this is good for patients. In emergency situations, there may not be time to collect the proper items for surgery and see that they are properly disinfected. It may be a case where operation needs to happen immediately, and with equipment that can be trusted not to further harm that individual requiring assistance.

A Backup Plan

Getting custom trays is a very wise option. Considering the savings in time alone, it’s an option worth pursuing immediately. Should this option be pursued, several “generations” of tray should be purchased. One group will be for immediate operations. One group is for backups in the event your lose normal operational trays. The third group is for extreme emergencies like some kind of pandemic affecting your clinic’s services, or something of that ilk. Having three families of tray continuously available per surgery department, and simply recycling the first wave of trays as they pass, is a great way to keep secure and dependable operational equipment available at all times.

Save Time In Tear down

Depending on the proclivities of your office, custom trays can be thrown away after they’ve been used, or tossed in a recycle bin; but if you’re not in the practice of regularly disinfecting items immediately upon their need for surgery, then either way you can just toss the tray and its contents where they can be cleaned/disposed of as fits your clinic’s procedures. There’s no no need to hassle with any cleanup if you’re using custom trays. Think of it like a meal which comes in its own pre-packaged plastic plate. You can keep it if you want, or toss it out with the other plastic plates; but either way, you don’t have to do dishes.