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Central Steralisation

The purpose of a central sterile supply department (C.S.S.D.) is to supply all departments of a hospital theatres, wards, out-patient and casualty departments with complete, sterile (and the accent is on "sterile ") equipment ready and available for immediate use in the treatment of patients. The only exception to this may be the theatre instruments, which are generally kept, Cleaned, sterilized, and used in the theatre suites.

The essentials of the department are correct design, modern plant, skilful operators, and a proper work-flow. Regular skilled maintenance to avoid breakdowns of plant, especially steam-pressure sterilizers, is also essential. The basic equipment consists of steam pressure sterilizers and hot-air ovens, which provide a uniform standard of sterility of supplies throughout the hospital-a much higher standard than prevails where decentralized boiling-water sterilizers, used for instruments, bowls, syringes, etc., are scattered in wards, theatres, and out-patient and casualty departments, and are manipulated by many persons engaged in multifarious duties. Other advantages include decreased maintenance and replacement costs of expensive equipment, more time for the nursing staff to devote to nursing care, better care and maintenance of instruments and utensils resulting in longer life, and fewer losses of items due to control from the centre at all stages. But perhaps the greatest value of a C.S.S.D. is the supply of sterile equipment designed to suit every procedure in ward or theatre, and the sterility of which can be guaranteed-a further step towards the prevention of hospital infection.

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