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Criteria for Evaluating and Purchasing Aseptic Barrier Material for Surgical Gowns and Drapes (4.01)

Criteria for Evaluating and Purchasing Aseptic Barrier Material for Surgical Gowns and Drapes (4.01) - Policies, Clinical, UWHC Clinical, Department Specific, Surgical Services, Equipment and Supplies

4.01

UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN
POLICY & PROCEDURE

EFFECTIVE DATE

APRIL 1990
ORIGINAL
 REVISION

SEPTEMBER 2014
PAGE 1
OF 3
POLICY #

4.01
ADMINISTRATIVE MANUAL
NURSING MANUAL
OTHER Surgical Services
TITLE
CRITERIA FOR EVALUATING AND PURCHASING
ASEPTIC BARRIER MATERIAL FOR SURGICAL
GOWNS AND DRAPES


I. PURPOSE

Gowns and drapes used during surgical procedures are a link in the prevention of wound infection and
exposure to blood and body fluids. The materials must be evaluated prior to selection and use. Gowns and
drapes provide essential barriers between sterile and unsterile environments. The quality and construction of
the material affects the quality of asepsis.

II. POLICY

A. The Surgical Services Managers who oversee purchasing for the Operating Room are responsible for
the decisions regarding products purchased for the O.R. in conjunction with the O.R. The products
which are purchased by MUHL are evaluated by the Hospital Linen Committee. The O.R. will
conduct evaluations on linen when requested by MUHL.
B. The products will be evaluated and purchased according to the following criteria.
1. The surgical gowns and drapes should be made of material that establishes a barrier to minimize
the passage of microorganisms between non-sterile and sterile areas.
a. Materials should be resistant to penetration by blood and other liquids. Bacterial passage
causes contamination if wicking occurs from a sterile to non-sterile surface.
b. Reusable fabrics should maintain barrier quality through multiple launderings. A system will
be utilized to determine the number of times an item is laundered before the barrier integrity
is compromised.
c. Reusable fabrics should be receptive to the sterilization process as well as withstand multiple
sterilizations. Drapes and gowns are to be compatible with the sterilization process, since the
primary function of the drapes and gowns is to define and preserve the sterile field during
surgery by isolating the surgical site and preventing microbes in contaminated areas from
migrating into aseptic areas.
d. Manufacturer supplied or recommended materials will be used for repairing reusable fabrics.
Repaired reusable materials can be effectively sterilized. The limit to the percent of exposed
surface area that can be repaired depends on a variety of criteria including standards and
fabric utilization, mode of sterilizing, positioning in the sterilizer and the number of layers of
repaired fabric.
e. Unused disposable gowns and drapes should not be resterilized unless the manufacturer
provides written instructions for reprocessing. Reprocessing and/or reuse of single use items
is not recommended unless an institution can demonstrate and document that patient safety,
correct type of processing, and device effectiveness are not compromised.
f. Materials should be resistant to tears, puncture, strain, and abrasion. The performance
characteristic of primary concern when evaluating drapes and gowns is permeability under
the condition of use.
g. Quantitative data should be available to show that materials provide an effective barrier to
microbes. Data should be available about the ability of each material to prevent bacterial

UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN
POLICY & PROCEDURE

EFFECTIVE DATE

APRIL 1990
ORIGINAL
 REVISION

SEPTEMBER 2014
PAGE 2
OF 3
POLICY #

4.01
ADMINISTRATIVE MANUAL
NURSING MANUAL
OTHER Surgical Services
TITLE
CRITERIA FOR EVALUATING AND PURCHASING
ASEPTIC BARRIER MATERIAL FOR SURGICAL
GOWNS AND DRAPES


transfer in various physiologic media in relation to variables of time, hydrostatic pressure and
physical deformation.
2. Gowns and drapes should be made of materials that are safe and comfortable for use in the
operating room environment.
a. Materials should meet or exceed the requirements of the National Fire Protection Agency
regulations. All types of gowning and draping materials should be considered potentially
flammable, only needing a combination of circumstances to result in a fire. Care should be
taken when gowns and drapes are exposed to light and heat sources, electrosurgical devices,
lasers, and other power equipment.
b. Materials should be as lint free as possible to reduce the dissemination of particles into the
wound and environment. Lint may pose potential threats to patient health, such as foreign
body reactions, embolism, and as a vehicle for transmission of microorganisms.
c. Seams of barrier materials should be evaluated to determine their capability to minimize
either penetration or passage of potential contaminants.
d. Materials should maintain an aseptic barrier when used according to manufacturers'
directions. Aseptic technique may be compromised by barrier materials that allow shifting of
drapes and/or bacterial penetration.
e. For handling Cytotoxic agents, gowns need to be disposable, one time use, low lint, low-
permeability, with a solid front, long sleeves, tight-fitting knit cuffs, and made of a
polyethylene-coated material. See administrative policy #12.34.
3. Quality of the products will be monitored by the purchaser, either the Operating Room or
MUHL. Unacceptable products, problems, or concerns should be reported to:
a. For the O.R.:
 Carol Smithson, phone #263-8772
 Michelle Severson, phone #263-9230
 Jason Pearson, phone #262-0171
 Brenda Brookins, phone #516-4072
 Ric Choudoir, phone #513-2877
b. For MUHL:
 Steve Havlik, phone #257-6751


UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN
POLICY & PROCEDURE

EFFECTIVE DATE

APRIL 1990
ORIGINAL
 REVISION

SEPTEMBER 2014
PAGE 3
OF 3
POLICY #

4.01
ADMINISTRATIVE MANUAL
NURSING MANUAL
OTHER Surgical Services
TITLE
CRITERIA FOR EVALUATING AND PURCHASING
ASEPTIC BARRIER MATERIAL FOR SURGICAL
GOWNS AND DRAPES


III. GUIDELINES

These guidelines are written to present additional information to be used when implementing the preceding
recommended practices.

A. The ability to resist penetration of moist contamination is not always compatible with other factors
considered desirable in materials such as comfort, economy, safety, and aesthetic appeal.
B. Materials should be nonabrasive and free of toxic ingredients, non-fast dyes, and noxious odors.
C. Materials should be non-glare and of a color that minimizes distortion from reflected light.
D. Gowns should fit and allow freedom of movement. Surgical drapes should have limited memory and
be flexible enough to conform loosely so the patient can turn and allow for unhampered
manipulation of surgical instrumentation and appropriately draped related equipment.
E. Gowns and drapes should maintain an environment appropriate to body temperature.
F. The capabilities of the practice settings as well as the community requirements for collecting,
transporting, and disposing of waste materials to meet ecological and pollution standards should be
considered.
G. Materials should maintain integrity over the expected life of the garment or drape as claimed by the
manufacturer.
H. Surgical gowns and drapes selected for use should have a favorable cost - benefit ratio.
I. Surgical gowns and drapes are considered medical devices and failure of these devices is subject to
medical device report requirements according to the Safe Medical Device Act of 1990 and/or the
FDA Voluntary Problem Reporting Program. A PSN is written for failure of the devices.

IV. REFERENCE

A. 2009 AORN Perioperative Standards and Recommended Practices, pages 361-365.

REVIEWED BY

Craig Dalton, Reprocessing Manager, Central Services, September, 2014
Surgical Services Policy and Procedure Committee, September, 2014
Deborah Ankowicz, Director, Risk Management, June, 2014
Sara Zerbel, Clinical Infection Control Practitioner, June, 2014

SIGNED BY

Barbara Pankratz, RN, MSN
Director, Surgical Services Department