Does UVC disinfection reduce C.diff incidence?

C.diff is generally recognised as being one of the most difficult of all hospital pathogens to eradicate. However, UVC disinfection can kill the C.diff organism and effect beneficial reductions in C.diff spores.

Does UVC disinfection reduce C.diff incidence?

Clostridium difficile infections (CDI) are widely acknowledged as one of the most common causes of healthcare-associated infections (HCAIs) in the United States. A bacteria that can infect the bowel, Clostridium difficile (C. diff) causes diarrhoea and gastroenteritis.

C.diff is known to resist a range of disinfection treatments and generally recognised as being the most difficult of all hospital pathogens to eradicate. However, UVC disinfection can kill the C.diff organism and effect beneficial reductions in C.diff spores.

How UVC can be used to disinfect against C.diff?

C.diff contracted in hospitals leads to increased length of stays for patients and up to 40 percent higher costs for each case diagnosed and higher rates of readmission and mortality. Consequently, to improve the quality of care and patient safety and lower costs, the prevention and reduction of the spread of C.diff is of the utmost importance.

UVC disinfection is carried out by specialised devices which deliver a calculated dose of calibrated ultraviolet light. The light scrambles the DNA of viruses and bacteria wherever it shines, killing them and thoroughly disinfecting the surfaces and the air surrounding them.

A study conducted by the journal of the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America – Infection Control & Hospital Epidemiology found that UVC disinfection to clean unoccupied hospital rooms significantly reduced C.diff infection rates in high-risk patients who subsequently occupied those areas.

The study, carried out across three haematology-oncology units at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania over a one-year period, demonstrated that including UVC disinfection as part of the facility’s regular disinfection process reduced the incidence of C.diff by 25 percent among new patients in these units, as compared to the previous year.

The team found that using a UVC disinfection device in a room after traditional manual cleaning, not only reduced the number of infections but did so with negligible impact on average room cleaning times. According to the study, room cleaning only took on average five minutes longer when including UVC disinfection.

David Pegues, MD, lead author of the study and a professor of Medicine in the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania concluded, “UV light disinfection is a fast, safe and effective technology to reduce the risk of C.difficile infection associated with the hospital environment.”

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Other HCAIs (Healthcare Aquired Infections) which UVC disinfection is effective against

UVC disinfection can reduce the risk of HCAIs in healthcare facilities and has been proven to kill common HCAIs such as methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), methicillin-sensitive candida auris, staphylococcus aureus (MSSA), effscherichiacoli (E. coli) and C.difficile. The flexibility of UVC means that it is likely to carry on being highly effective as these pathogens continue to evolve and mutate.

Effective in reducing the risk of C.difficile and HCAIs, UVC disinfection is also efficient in eliminating a range of viruses and bacteria that encompasses Coronavirus, including COVID-19.

How to employ UVC disinfection in your facility

UVC disinfection requires powerful, specialised equipment to ensure that the correct wavelength of UV light is emitted safely and reliably. For effective total-room disinfection, a device with a 360-degree range is essential. Our own THOR UVC® device employs 24 UVC emitters, providing floor-to-ceiling UVC light which terminally cleans both the surfaces in a room and the air around them. It eradicates 99.9999% of all HCAIs, bacteria and viruses present in the room, and is designed to be both easy for staff to operate and comprehensively effective.

How can I find out whether UVC is right for my healthcare facility or commercial premises?

Our expert team designed and built THOR UVC® and can advise you on whether these solutions are right for your setting, and, if they are, how best to deploy them.

To speak with them, please email our international sales team or call us on:

UK: +44 (0) 207 193 5641

USA: +1 844 4 346736

Aus: +61 1300 665 884