MedStar Franklin Square Unveils New Germ Zapping Robot to Enhance Patient Safety
MedStar Franklin Square has taken a leap into the future with a germ-zapping robot that eliminates hard-to-kill bugs to increase patient safety.
January 9, 2014
New Technology is First of its Kind in Baltimore; Enhances Patient Safety
Baltimore—(January 9, 2014)— As hospitals across the nation look for new and innovative ways to battle deadly pathogens and kill risky multi-drug resistant organisms, MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center has taken a leap into the future with a germ-zapping robot that eliminates hard-to-kill bugs in hard-to-clean places.
The Xenex robot uses pulsed xenon ultraviolet (UV-C) light that is 25,000 times more powerful than sunlight to destroy harmful bacteria, viruses, fungi, and even bacterial spores. The system is effective against even the most dangerous pathogens, including Clostridium difficile (C. diff), norovirus, influenza, and staph bacteria, including Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, better known as MRSA.
The robot can disinfect a room in minutes and is easily portable, allowing it to be used in virtually any location within the hospital. MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center is the first hospital in the region to implement robotic disinfection system, which has been credited for helping other healthcare facilities in the U.S. decrease their MRSA and C.diff infection rates by more than 50 percent, according to studies.
“This technology represents our ongoing, aggressive efforts to offer our patients the highest possible quality of care, in the safest possible environment,” said Larry Strassner, Sr. Vice-President of Operations and Chief Nursing Officer for the hospital. “We are very excited to begin using the robot to help us achieve our goals in infection prevention. Patient safety remains our top priority.” MFSMC plans to use this technology to clean all patient rooms, the ER and operating rooms.
Because the Xenex robots use UV light, they are able to reach every surface in the room and do not leave a chemical residue. Each treatment takes about 5 minutes. To disinfect a room after standard cleaning procedures are complete, hospital team members wheel the Xenex robot into the room, position it, begin the automated sequence, and then leave the room. A sign is placed outside the room warning people not to enter while the robot is in operation, and a motion sensor on the robot automatically shuts off the machine if anyone should enter, or if motion is detected. The process is then repeated on the other side of the bed and in the bathroom, for a total of 15 minutes to thoroughly clean each room.
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About MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center
MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center is a not-for-profit 378-bed community teaching hospital located in the White Marsh section of eastern Baltimore County, Maryland. MedStar Franklin Square provides many medical and healthcare services, including a broad range of healthcare specialties, advanced technologies and treatments not traditionally found at community hospitals. The hospital is ranked third in admissions among all Maryland hospitals and is first in Emergency Department visits with more than 108,000 visits annually. MedStar Franklin Square is accredited by the Joint Commission and certified as a Primary Stroke Center and has earned some of the nation’s most prestigious quality awards including Magnet Designation for excellence in nursing, the Excellence Award for Quality Improvement from the Delmarva Foundation and inclusion in the U.S. News & World Report Best Hospital specialty ranking for four consecutive years. With more than 3,300 employees, MedStar Franklin Square is one of the largest employers in Baltimore County. Visit medstarfranklinsquare.org for more information.
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