Hospitals seek funding for UVC disinfection technology
San Juan Regional is one of several entities in New Mexico who hope to receive state funds through the capital outlay process to improve disinfection capabilities throughout the facility.
The requests made on behalf of San Juan Regional Medical Center were mainly focused on pandemic response. San Juan Regional Medical Center Spokeswoman Laura Werbner said the safety and prevention of illness for both patients and caregivers is a key priority for the hospital.
“We are taking several important steps to reduce the likelihood of transmission of highly contagious respiratory illnesses such as COVID-19 via aerosols,” she said in an email. “We have been utilizing UV technology for 8 years now to kill viruses and bacteria through our two Tru-D germ-eliminating UV disinfection robots.”
Click here to learn more about the Tru-D device’s UVC technology.
San Juan Regional began its Tru-D robot disinfection program in January of 2014. With the original goal of six cycles per day, San Juan Regional invested in a second Tru-D device, which has allowed the facility to triple its cycles, averaging 16-18 cycles per day with an average of 300 cycles per month.
“Our current KPI board goal is to disinfect 100% of our contact isolation rooms. Right now we are at 95%. We were only hitting 65% of all contact isolations when we started the UVC disinfection program,” Utahna Ortiz, manager of Environmental Services and Laundry for San Juan Regional, said.
From 2017 to 2018, San Juan Regional was able to avoid 14 C. diff cases through its process improvement efforts. According to San Juan Regional, the estimated cost of an individual hospital-onset C. diff infection is $11,285. This would translate to an estimated cost savings of $157,990.