Pre-cleaning is not some theoretical practice or a good idea talked about by infection preventionists. It has real-world impacts.
In 2018, Porter Adventist Hospital in Denver halted surgeries after the Joint Commission investigation found 129 instances of “incomplete removal of gross surgical contamination” over the course of 13 months.
Failure of the hospital staff at Porter Adventist Hospital to pre-clean surgical instruments contributed to contaminated instruments being used in procedures, putting nearly 5,800 patients at risk for surgical site infections, including exposure to HIV and hepatitis.
The hospital reached out to the affected patients, citing pre-cleaning as the cause of inadequate sterilization. The hospital faced several lawsuits, some dating back all the way to 2015.
If you feel like you “don’t have time for pre-cleaning”, you may find you have all the time you need after surgeries are cancelled. If it “costs too much labor” to add that to room turnover, remember what it can cost the hospital in lawsuits and in patient lives.