Active Systems

Modern active scavenging is usually driven by a fan unit remote to the theatre unit which produces a sub atmospheric pressure capable of large gas flows (75 l/min, peak flow 130 l/min per patient) in a piped distribution system. Distribution is terminated in each theatre where it is connected to the reservoir collection system. The reservoir usually houses a visual flow indicator that should be periodically checked to ensure the system is working. The system should operate within the pressures of -0.5 cmH2O and 5.0 cmH2O at 30 l/min.

Figure EQ.7 Scavenging systems

Sterilisation of Equipment

There is a range of methods for cleaning equipment from decontamination through disinfection to sterilisation. Decontamination is the physical removal of infected material by washing or scrubbing, disinfection is the killing of non sporing organisms and sterilisation is the killing of all micro-organisms including viruses, fungi and spores. Methods of disinfection and sterilisation are listed in Figure EQ.8.

Increasingly filtration is used as a method of controlling transfer of infected material, for example the protection of ventilators.

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