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Monitoring your Sterilizer with Chemical Indicators: Are They Required? -Sterilizer Monitoring

Most state dental boards require that biological monitoring of the sterilization cycle be conducted using a spore test on a weekly basis. But what about sterilizer monitoring using a chemical indicator? Do most dental boards require chemical monitoring too? Chemical monitoring involves placing a chemical indicator next to the instruments inside each package and on the outside of each package which changes color if certain conditions required for sterilization have been met. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends chemical sterilizer monitoring, but most dental boards do not require it to assess sterilizer function.

According to the CDC, “because chemical indicator test results are received when the sterilization cycle is complete, they can provide an early indication of a problem and where in the process the problem might exist.” While chemical monitoring can provide early warning that a sterilizer may not be functioning properly and are recommended for each load, only biological monitoring is considered the gold standard for testing sterilizer functionality and is the only sterilizer testing required in most states.

The Spore Check System from OSHA Review meets state dental board requirements and CDC recommendations for biological monitoring of sterilizers.

OSHA Review, Inc. a registered continuing education provider in the State of California, specializing in Dental Practice Act, infection control, and Cal/OSHA training. OSHA Review subscribers in California receive updated regulatory compliance and infection control training thorough our bi-monthly newsletter.

In addition, OSHA Review, Inc. provides sterilizer monitoring services in all 50 states through the Spore Check System. The Spore Check System is endorsed by the Arizona, California, Ohio and Texas Dental Association.

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