AUSTIN, Texas — St. David’s South Austin Medical Center recently became the first hospital in Austin to use the Xenex Germ-Zapping Robot™ to enhance patient safety by disinfecting and eliminating hard-to-kill superbugs—such as multi-drug resistant organisms—in hard-to-clean places.
“We are pleased to add another layer of protection to our already robust infection prevention protocols, allowing us to be even more proactive in protecting our patients,” Todd Steward, chief executive officer of St. David’s South Austin Medical Center, said. “This new, sophisticated technology allows St. David’s South Austin Medical Center to remain on the cutting edge of safety, and it underscores our commitment to patient care.”
The Xenex Full-Spectrum™UV room disinfection system works by pulsing xenon, an inert gas, at a high intensity in a xenon ultraviolet flashlamp. This produces ultraviolet C (UVC) light, which penetrates the cell walls of microorganisms, including bacteria, viruses, mold, fungus and spores. Their DNA is instantly fused so that they are unable to reproduce or mutate, effectively killing them on surfaces without contact or chemicals. The Xenex system is effective against the most dangerous pathogens, including Clostridium difficile (C. diff), norovirus, influenza, the Ebola virus and staph bacteria, including Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, or MRSA.
The portable Xenex system can disinfect a typical patient or procedure room in 5 to 10 minutes—faster than other automated cleaning and infection control methods, including mercury UV and hydrogen peroxide-based systems, which can take multiple hours to achieve the same level of disinfection. It can be used in any department and in any unit within a healthcare facility, including isolation rooms, operating rooms, general patient care rooms, contact precaution areas, emergency rooms, bathrooms and public spaces.
To disinfect a room after standard cleaning procedures, hospital staff roll the Xenex Robot into the room, position it beside the bed, begin the automated sequence and then leave the room. A sign is placed outside the room warning people not to enter while the robot is in operation, and a motion sensor on the robot automatically shuts off the machine if anyone should enter. The process is then repeated on the other side of the bed and in the bathroom, for a total of 15 minutes.
The Xenex Germ-Zapping Robot has been tested and proven using independent lab verification on the most common, dangerous and difficult-to-treat microorganisms. Most importantly, the Xenex system has been credited with helping health care facilities across the U.S. reduce their infection rates significantly, and several hospitals have published their infection rate reduction studies in peer-reviewed journals.