A Wrinkle in Time…

15 Mar

Discover your strengths and weaknesses along the course of the journey

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The world has probably changed more in the last few weeks than it has in the last two years during the pandemic. While we all want to be hopeful for peace in Europe, and a return to normalcy as the incidence of COVID 19 declines, world events just keep moving in the opposite direction. So, what to do? “Plan for the worst and hope for the best” is the strategy of the day. While for Case Medical, our perforated bottom rigid reusable containers remain the universal choice, it may be time to consider the advantage of solid bottom containers for pre-vacuum steam sterilization, for Stryker’s SteriZone low temp sterilizer, and certainly for transport of used items…

Reusable Containers

Running out of critical packaging supplies for surgical sets like wrap, filters, and tamper seals can spell disaster for any healthcare facility. Looking for more flexible ways to use existing assets and broadening your source of supply will help keep you prepared for any eventuality. Stocking up (hoarding), assuming you can get the materials you need, might work in the short term but is bad for everyone else and eventually all consumables will run out.

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Right off the bat, SteriTite containers reduce dependence on scarce and increasingly expensive blue-wrap. Solid bottom containers offer a way to stretch limited consumable resources. Solid bottom containers have advantages in a supply chain crisis when metals and filter material are at a premium. They require fewer filters overall, and since they are meant for pre-vacuum steam sterilization, plentiful, and inexpensive paper filters are all that’s needed.

Minimize the need for blue wrap

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Further consider how loaner trays can be blue-wrap “hogs”.  DIN sized solid bottom containers, like Case Medical’s SteriTite containers, manufactured right here in the USA are perfect for loaner sets to drop right in and allow for stacking multiple trays into one container. Afterall, loaners are mostly processed in pre-vacuum steam sterilization and the same container can be used frequently as other sets come in and out of the department.  Where individual loaners trays require blue-wrap, corner protectors and other wear and tear prevention addons, a single container holding several baskets eliminates as many sheets as possible of blue-wrap and all the addons, while saving on time and labor to wrap individual trays for sterilization.

Ideal for loaners and for the times

Case Medical pioneered the universal perforated bottom rigid reusable container to achieve greater flexibility with both steam and low-temp sterilization modalities. When all is said and done, SteriTite solid bottom containers may be best for now. Fewer filters and retention plates. Ideal for sterilizing loaners and transporting used devices. Soiled items can be prepped and moistened with an enzymatic cleaner such as PentaPrep® for return to SPD without leaks or mess.

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Under normal circumstances having a SteriTite universal container fitted with polypropylene filters compatible with any sterilizer does a great job of streamlining processes and simplifying inventory of consumables. But these are hardly normal times and using solid bottom containers for pre-vacuum steam and perforated bottom containers specifically for low temp sterilization is a smart way to minimize reliance on scarce polypropylene materials.

Weigh the Pros & Cons

Like a wrinkle in time, do your risk analysis and consider what is best for now given all the challenges we are facing. Don’t paint yourself into a corner by depending on wrap and the associated consumable supplies. Let Case Medical help you diversify how you pack, sterilize and store surgical sets and medical devices. Afterall, all of our container components are interchangeable.

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Visit us at www.casemed.com to learn more about our products and how they can help your facility lessen its dependence on blue wrap.

Kindest Regards,
Marcia Frieze and the Case Medical team

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