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EDANA’S Medical Devices Committee welcomes survey on HCAIs - ECDC report shows the critical need for single-use medical nonwovens in effective infection control

The report on ‘Healthcare associated infections and antimicrobial use in European acute care hospitals’ published by ECDC, reaffirms the need for single-use medical nonwovens in effective infection control. EDANA's MEDECO committee which has the mission to promote the benefits of single-use products to prevent infection, welcomed the survey.

EDANA, the Association representing the nonwovens and related industries, welcomed the survey, published by the ECDC on ‘Healthcare associated infections and antimicrobial use in European acute care hospitals’, in an effort to raise understanding and awareness of the impact and cost to both the patient and healthcare professionals for Healthcare-associated infections (HCAIs).

The survey, conducted in more than 1,000 hospitals in 30 European countries, provides the most comprehensive database on healthcare-associated infections and antimicrobial use in European acute care hospitals to date. Main findings of the survey showed that:

-  On any given day, about 80,000 patients – or 1 in 18 patients – in European hospitals have at least one healthcare-associated infection;

-  The most common types of such infections are respiratory tract infections, surgical site infections, urinary tract infections and bloodstream infections; and

-  At least one in three patients, receive at least one antimicrobial agent on any given day in European hospitals.

Based on the survey results, the ECDC has made recommendations that should be further developed and implemented across Europe. These recommendations include:

-  Increasing the skills for surveillance of healthcare-associated infections and antimicrobial use; and

-  Raising awareness of HCAIs among healthcare workers across the EU.

“Experience has shown that in surgery single-use surgical barrier materials (surgical gloves, gowns, drapes, and masks) are a key factor to prevent transfer of micro-organisms.” Said Pierre Wiertz, General Manager of EDANA.

Although in Europe the market penetration of single-use gowns and drapes has reached on average 60 to 65% (taking into account geographical differences), this is still significantly lower than in the USA. More has to be done to help increasing that penetration and thus contribute to efforts of better infection control to reduce HCAI’s.

“The mission of EDANA’s MEDECO (medical devices committee), is therefore to promote the benefits of single-use nonwovens products to decision makers, influencers and end-users in surgery, wound management and infection control, and to position EDANA as the leading independent authority and reference for nonwovens and to promote high levels of product safety and quality in accordance with established quality standards.” Continued Mr Wiertz

Recently, EDANA’s MEDECO has re-asserted its objectives and commitment to

-  Identify and monitor regulatory and political developments relevant to these products and industry;

-  Participate in policy-development in Europe (such as the draft EU Medical Devices Directive);

-  Provide non-competitive information about our industry;

-  Maintain contacts with relevant European and national authorities and institutions; and

-  Promote greater public awareness about these products, their uses, benefits and in particular, their contribution to sustainability.

EDANA welcomes any interested company involved in the supply chain for surgical gowns, drapes, masks to join its MEDECO and participate in the fight for safe healthcare.

EDANA | Avenue Herrmann Debroux 46-B-1160 Brussels, Belgium | Tel: +32 2 734 93 10