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    20. November

    Hygiene, safety, sustainability.

    The L&R single-use range

    The L&R single-use instrument range

    L&R offers a fully comprehensive range of products and solutions for operating theatres, which have primarily been designed with a focus on quality and functionality. This OR range comprises four product groups, Raucodrape (OR Drape Systems), Sentinex (OR Clothing), Sentina (Single-Use Instruments) and Kitpack (OR Custom Procedure Tray), all of which are designed to increase safety, efficiency and sustainability in hospitals.

    According to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), approximately 3.2 million people suffer hospitalacquired infections each year in Europe alone. Of those, some 37,000 patients actually die from these infections caused by antibiotic-resistant bacteria every year. The percentage of surgical site infections (SSI) comprises a substantial portion, nearly one-fifth, of hospital-acquired infections. The ECDC believes that 20 to 30 per cent of all hospital-acquired infections could be avoided by introducing intensive hygiene and control programmes.1 

    In view of the top importance of preventing intra- and postoperative infections, it is crucial that products and materials used during surgery to meet stringent quality requirements. Patients and staff can only be reliably protected if all pathogen transmission routes are cut-off to the greatest extent possible.

    L&R’s OR portfolio strategy centres on the advantages of single-use products and combines user and patient hygiene and safety with sustainability and cost efficiency. However, single- use products are also increasingly being favoured for use in outpatient care, medical practices, by independent practitioners and in the provision of home care. 

    L&R’s commitment to making a positive contribution in this field is not just reflected by its products and solutions, but also its awareness-raising campaigns for expert groups. 

    Can single-use medical products be environmentally sustainable?

    In addition to economic and clinical safety considerations aside, the question of how to reconcile the use of single-use products with sustainability is raised.

    Single-use medical devices are subject to the same stringent quality requirements set out under the Medical Devices Act as reusable ones. However, in contrast to reusable products, single-use products also display a number of definitive advantages, including the fact that they can be recycled, do not require any resources such as water, energy and human resources for reprocessing and are produced and provided in kits tailored to meet specific clinical needs. This means that there is never any risk of waste from unused products. L&R’s just-in-time delivery is another advantage and means that users do not have invest in expensive storage space. 

    Sentinex® (OR Clothing) and Raucodrape® (OR Drape Systems)

    L&R’s OR Clothing and OR Drape Systems are precision-designed to meet our customers’ individual needs in terms of material and function and are subject to ongoing and stringent quality controls. These quality controls are based on safety standards that generally exceed the legal requirements.

    Single-use medical devices are always brand new – i.e. they have never been used before – which means there is zero risk of any contamination from earlier use. In contrast to reusable materials, single-use drapes and gowns also have the advantage that they will never become worn or worn out over time. This is important because it is only possible to create an effective microbial barrier if the materials used are impermeable to microbes and free from microorganisms and organic residues. Moreover, they should also be lint-free, impermeable to fluid, tear- and pressure-resistant and have a high tensile strength. The cotton used in reusable products cannot guarantee these properties 100 per cent of the time, even with regular waterproofing and sterilisation. 19.6 per cent of acquired infections arise during surgery. This means that approximately 500,000 patients acquire infections during surgery in Europe every year. Figures furthermore suggest that one in ten patients admitted to hospital in Europe will acquire a bacterial infection.

    A study published in the Journal of Cardiothoracic Surgery showed that the rate of infection in the study group with single-use OR drapes was 68 per cent lower than in the group in which reusable OR drapes were used. The authors of the study concluded that the “more generous use of single-use OR drapes can reduce post-operative infections due to poor hygiene.”

    For safety and sustainability:

    • Compliance with and (in-part) exceeding the legal requirements.
    • Fewer post-surgical infections.
    • All relevant medical product components are new, unused and ready for immediate use.
    • Products meet the requirements of the Medical Devices Act and DIN EN 13795.
    • Saves resources such as water, energy and human resources associated with reusable devices.
    • Saves cleaning agents.

    Sentina® Single-Use Instruments

    L&R has offered single-use instruments for hospitals, medical practices, nursing homes and home care under its Sentina brand since 2018. These products meet the very high standards for hygiene and safety set out by law for medicine and nursing.

    Users demand solutions, which offer them safety, high quality and precision handling, whilst simultaneously satisfying economic criteria. In addition to those considerations, users are also increasingly concerned regarding cost efficiency and sustainability.

    Being able to use brand-new, sterile instruments with full functionality for all surgery not only minimises the safety risks, also conserving natural resources because reprocessing becomes redundant.

    The fact that these instruments are easy to dispose of and recycle through local waste disposal and recycling systems, and the amount of water, cleaning agents and energy saved by not reprocessing such instruments, also clearly speak in favour of the use of single-use instruments. Also, these instruments neither need to be serviced nor repaired. Single-use instruments are furthermore easy to identify thanks to their colour coding and the symbol for single use.

    Claudia Schneider, L&R Global Marketing: “The synergy of hygiene, safety, sustainability and time savings achieved by single-use instruments is perfect. We are currently working in close exchange with customers in this respect and are consequently in a position to respond quickly to their needs.”

    For safety and sustainability:

    • High safety and hygiene requirements are met.
    • Lower risk of infection.
    • Return of single-use instruments to the materials cycle.
    • Up to 99 per cent of the steel used in Sentina single-use instruments can be recycled.
    • The instruments are collected in drop tanks.
    • The drop tanks are disposed of via regionally organised waste disposal and returned to the recycling process.

    Kitpack® OR Custom Procedure Tray

    L&R’s Kitpack OR Custom Procedure Tray is based on 30 years’ experience and know-how. To date, L&R has produced over 40 million of these custom kits since opening its new production facility in Slavkov u Brna, Czech Republic. Kitpack custom set systems sales are currently growing at a double-digit rate annually, which translates into over five million finished systems per year, which are delivered worldwide just in time.

    Providing healthcare professionals in hospitals and outpatient medical centres with custom-assembled, sterile OR set systems, L&R not only reduces their workloads but also prevents infections and cross-contamination during surgery. Thanks to the fact that our Kitpack OR Custom Procedure Tray already contains all of the single-use instruments needed for the relevant procedure, there is no longer any need for the individual components to be gathered by clinic staff, thus saving valuable time.

    Customised operation room ready set systems assembled in line with the needs of the relevant hospital or clinic ensure that procedures can be performed in an efficient and environmentally friendly way, and help to optimise the use of storage space. However, L&R’s Kitpacks not only reduce the time needed to prepare for surgical procedures and the associated costs, but also effectively help to prevent infections. Because all of the procedures performed in ORs are associated with a risk of contamination. Kitpack can help to minimise the amount of contact made with the single-use materials during a procedure and hence systematically reduce the risk of cross-contamination. It also removes any need for hospitals and clinics to check the sterility of their instruments because all of the set components are already sterilised by L&R.

    For safety and sustainability:

    • Systematic reduction of the contamination risk.
    • Customised trays reduce waste because they only include the materials actually needed.
    • Efficient storage.
    • Just-in-time logistics solution.
    • Kitpacks are assembled under clean room conditions.
    • Manufactured and customised based on the DIN ISO 9001 quality management system.

    “Our customers’ feedback about our OR drapes, OR gowns, Kitpack and Sentina single-use instruments is extremely positive. We are aware of the increasing improved hygiene and safety requirements, as well as the growing economic pressure and the search for efficient solutions, which also do not neglect sustainability aspects.”

    Claudia Schneider
    Brandmanager, Global Marketing