Lancaster General Hospital Adds Xenex’s Germ-Zapping Robot to Fight Superbugs

Lancaster General Hospital Adds Xenex’s Germ-Zapping Robot to Fight Superbugs

<0> Lancaster General HealthFrieda Schmidt, 717-544-5044orXenex Healthcare ServicesMelinda Hart, 210-824-3433 </0>

newest weapon against hospital-acquired infections looks a little like R2-D2 from Star Wars. The new room uses ultraviolet (UV-C) light that is 25,000 times more powerful than the sun to ‘zap’ nasty that cause infections like the flu, norovirus, MRSA and (). In minutes, the device can disinfect a patient room, patient bathroom or operating room (OR) by pulsing the light, which washes over the surfaces where germs reside.

LGH is the fourth hospital in Pennsylvania to have the Xenex device. About 100 hospitals nationwide are using , aimed at reducing rates of infection and saving costs. And it’s safe. Because the light is extremely intense, the machine operates on its own once it’s set up in a room. A sign placed outside the door warns people not to enter, and a motion sensor automatically shuts off the machine if someone should enter.

According to Scott Garrety, director of Environmental Services for LGH, three Xenex machines are being used in the operating rooms, isolation rooms and Intensive Care and Trauma-Neuro Units after every discharge or transfer.

"This technology is used in high risk areas in conjunction with the extensive cleaning services already provided by our Environmental Services team," said Garrety. “As the public health crisis of the 2013 flu season demonstrates, the most critical step to ensure infection control begins with a clean environment. In the past three weeks Xenex has sanitized 711 of our patient rooms.”

After cleaning, housekeepers position the Xenex device on both sides of the bed and in the restroom to further disinfect 99.99 percent of dangerous contaminants. Each treatment takes about five minutes, or 15 minutes per room.

"We already have a strong infection prevention program. The Xenex technology allows us to be even more proactive in protecting the health of our patients and staff," said Deb Hess, RN, CIC, Supervisor of Epidemiology, who first learned about at a conference last year, and then shared with colleagues at LG Health.

"In addition to offering better protection to patients, Xenex is also anticipated to save the hospital approximately $1 million a year as it reduces the incidence of hospital acquired infections (HAIs)," added Hess.

LG Health hopes to roll out Xenex systems at Women & Babies Hospital and in more locations at LGH in the near future.

Xenex develops pulse xenon UV room disinfection systems for the advanced cleaning of the patient environment in healthcare facilities. The Xenex system is the fastest, safest, most cost-effective, and easy-to-use system available today among room disinfection technologies. The Xenex mission is to significantly reduce the number of HAIs that impact the health and lives of millions of patients and their families and become the new standard method for disinfection in healthcare facilities worldwide. For more information, visit .