AAMI has publicly unveiled a new video promoting healthcare technology management (HTM) as a career option. The video first aired at the AAMI 2014 Conference & Expo in Philadelphia in June.
Karen Waninger and Barrett Franklin of AAMI’s Technology Management Council appear on the video, which was shot at Community Heart and Vascular Hospital in Indianapolis, Ind. The two discuss some of the opportunities provided by a career in the field.
“The HTM field offers great opportunities for clinical engineers, biomedical equipment technicians (BMETs), lab and radiology specialists, and others who use their expertise to ensure that medical devices are safe and effective and available for clinical use,” said Franklin. He also highlighted estimates from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics that the BMET field will grow by 30 percent by 2022.
“The career opportunities available in the HTM field are virtually limitless,” added Waninger, who noted that there is a great potential for advancement for those who opt for this career choice.
The full video can be accessed at http://vimeo.com/95551129.
Group Recommends Creation of Endoscope Reprocessing Standard
Recognizing the need for additional guidance for healthcare facilities in the reprocessing of flexible and semi-rigid endoscopes, an AAMI working group has decided to expand a technical information report (TIR) into a standard.
Members of the Endoscope Reprocessing Working Group recently proposed replacing TIR54, Processing of Flexible and Semi-Rigid Scopes, which was still in development, to a proposed American National Standard, titled ST91 – Comprehensive guide to flexible and semi-rigid endoscope reprocessing in health care facilities.
Initially, the working group had intended the TIR to serve as an educational document to help sterile processing professionals work through some of the existing — and often conflicting — guidelines. As the group worked on the document, it evolved into a format and structure similar to existing standards, and was more than just an education document.
“The AAMI Standards Board approved the request to upgrade it to a standard based upon the working group’s recommendation,” said Nancy Chobin, a consultant and educator with the Saint Barnabas Health Care System in Livingston, N.J., and co-chair of the group.
“The working group felt that there was a need to publish a national standard on flexible endoscopes because of all the issues concerning reprocessing of these devices,” Chobin said. She added that the working group has representatives from the Association of periOperative Registered Nurses, Society of Gastroenterology Nurses, and the Association for Professionals in Infection Control, all of which have examined the scientific evidence of recommendations made in the document.
The document will be go out to ballot this summer. Depending on the ballot results, it could be finished by the end of the year.
“As far as hospitals and surgery centers are concerned, this document will set a standard of care for their practice,” Chobin said. “Facilities will now have a single source to reference for their flexible endoscope reprocessing practices. Manufacturers will also understand the standards facilities need to meet and will be able to help them in terms of education and products.”
The rationale for changing the TIR to a standard stemmed from the AAMI/FDA Medical Device Reprocessing Summit that took place on Oct. 11-12, 2011, in Silver Spring, Md.
This event addressed challenges highlighted by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on the reprocessing of reusable medical devices. Some of the priorities identified at the summit included developing instructions to determine whether a device is clean, and the training and education of staff.
Sterilization Textbook Breaks Down Sterilization Principles
Are you a professional puzzled by the esoteric definitions of the terms sterilization verification, validation, and qualification? If so, a new resource from AAMI may be right up your alley.
Authored by Donna Swenson, a sterilization expert with more than 30 years of experience in the field, Basic Concepts in Sterilization Processes: Verification, Validation, and Qualification is a textbook that makes the science of sterilization more accessible to those who aren’t sterilization engineers.
As Swenson writes in the preface, the idea for the textbook came during an AAMI Sterilization Standards Committee meeting several years ago. She fell into conversation with a colleague, who said there was a great need for a book that explains what some professional terms mean in plain English. “This knowledge seems to be the private domain of sterilization engineers,” who seemingly have the uncanny ability to understand the abstruse world of sterilization principles, noted Swenson.
Several months after this conversation, she contacted AAMI to start work on the textbook, which defines and provides examples of sterilization science, quality management, validation theory, and cleaning and sterilization practices.
The resource also includes a section covering definitions and abbreviations, a chapter providing an overview of microbiology, and an overview of the steam sterilization process verification in healthcare facilities.
To learn more about the publication, visit www.aami.org/publications/Books/spvvq.html.
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