Surgical Instrument Reprocessing in Resource-Constrained Countries: A Scoping Review of Existing Methods, Policies and Barriers

Large gaps exist between instrument reprocessing practices in LMICs and recommended policies/procedures. Identified areas for improvement include instrument cleaning and decontamination, sterilization aspects of instrument reprocessing, and verification of sterilization. Education and training of staff responsible for reprocessing instruments and realistic, defined policies and procedures are critical, and lend themselves to improvement interventions.

(2018) English.                                                                                                                              Download this publication

Antimicrobial Resistance & Infection Control

Proper sterile processing is fundamental to safe surgical practice and optimal patient outcomes. Sterile processing practices in low and middle-income countries often fall short of recommended standards. The impact of education and training on sterile processing practices in low and middle-income countries is unknown. We designed a sterile processing education course, including mentoring, and aimed to evaluate the impact on participants' personal knowledge, skills, and practices. We also aimed to identify institutional changes in sterile processing practices at participants' work place

(2018) English.                                                                                                                              Download this publication

Limited Sterile Processing Capabilities for Safe Surgery in Low-Income and Middle-Income Countries

It is highly difficult to perform safe surgery without sterile instruments, yet the capacity to adequately clean, disinfect and sterilise surgical instruments in low-income and middle-income countries is largely unknown. Sterile Processing Education Charitable Trust developed an assessment tool and, in partnership with Mercy Ships, evaluated the sterile processing capacity in 59 facilities in Madagascar, Benin and the Republic of Congo. This data-driven analysis paper illustrates how lack of sterile processing capacity acts as a barrier to safe surgical care. Our tool identified widespread lack of knowledge of techniques and resources needed for sterile processing. Only 12% of workers in Republic of Congo and Benin had sterile processing training and none in Madagascar. None of the hospitals surveyed met basic standards for cleaning, disinfection and sterilization as defined by the WHO/Pan American Health Organization. 

(2017) English.                                                                                                                              Download this publication