At Wilk & Wilk Cambridge and Oakville, we have created a cleaning/disinfection and sterilization process and an instrument management system that strictly adheres to the sterilization/instrument handling guidelines established by Public Health Ontario. These guidelines are designed to prevent or reduce the risk of transmission of microorganisms in health care settings. We have implemented layers of strict infection control procedures for the safety of our patient families and have designated sterilization rooms that are central processing areas for all orthodontic instruments. The rooms are separate from the orthodontic clinics where the delivery of orthodontic care is provided and are divided spatially into distinct areas for receiving, cleaning, decontamination, preparation, sterilization, and temporary storage of instruments. All sterilized instruments are in wrapped instrument cassettes and are handled aseptically during their removal from the sterilizer and during their transport to the point of use.
We use only FDA-cleared medical devices for sterilization. Our sterilization areas have ultrasonic cleaners, Hydrim G4 instrument washers with integrated data loggers, Tuttnauer Elara 11 Class B autoclaves with automatic recording of cycle information, and Midmark M9 autoclaves for the sterilization of dental handpieces. We strictly follow the manufacturers’ recommended sterilization times, temperatures, and operating parameters to ensure proper sterilization protocols are being followed.
Furthermore, we biologically monitor our sterilization process daily through the use of biological steam indicators. Biological monitoring is regarded as the most valid method for monitoring the sterilization process because it uses live, highly resistant bacterial spores as the test medium.
We have also implemented a cleaning and disinfection process for all clinical contact surfaces and strictly maintain proper hand hygiene prior to patient contact through the use of antimicrobial hand soap and water or with an alcohol-based hand rub.
The integrity of our sterilization system is maintained by a dedicated group of clinical staff members each of whom has successfully completed the Public Health Ontario Reprocessing in Community Health Care Settings course.Back