The Use of UV-C Light Technology in the Fight Against Superbugs
Over the past decade there has been plenty of media interest in the rise of the Superbug those infectious organisms that make hospital patients ill with secondary infections and in many cases cause death. Theres not much super about that. But they are super once infection occurs. They are incredibly difficult to treat because they have become resistant to traditional methods of destruction using antibiotics.
These Superbugs are not confined to perhaps the most famous, MRSA. They include names like:
Clostridium difficile (C.Diff)
Vancomycin-resistant enterococci (VRE)
Carbapenem-resistant Klebsiella pneumoniae (CRKP)
Necrotizing fasciitis, the flesh-eating bacterial disease
In 2010 there were 485 number of deaths in UK hospitals and care homes where MRSA was noted as cause. These figures are much worse in the US with an estimated 1.7 million being infected every year.
Most of these organisms are present naturally in our environment without making people ill under normal circumstances
Superbugs are invisible and can live up to three days on surfaces so it is incredibly easy to infect others especially those with compromised immune systems who may be weak through a primary illness or infection.
The infection transfer can occur when one infected person touches another or when a patient touches something like a stethoscope, TV remote control, telephone, computer mouse, tap, door handle or light switch on which the pathogen resides.
The rise of this problem has led to an increase in good hygiene practises within the UK healthcare system. Hand washing and sanitisation is at the front line of this best practise and through an effective media campaign has raised awareness amongst the public who visit patients (and who may unwittingly introduce infections onto hospital wards), healthcare workers and patients themselves who are often more scared of contracting a Superbug than the treatment of their original ailment.
UV-C light has also been earmarked as a possible tool in the armoury.
UV-C light is not a new technology for sanitising and killing germs. In fact it has been used since the late 1880s to kill microorganisms. It was used extensively after World War II for sterilising air in hospitals, food storage areas and pharmaceutical plants. It was then used in the 1950s in the war against Tuberculosis.
In the 1960s new drugs and sterilising cleaners were introduced and the use of UV-C light technology fell out of favour.
However UV-C light has been trialled as the new tool to combat Superbugs in healthcare
settings. It has been hailed as a good natural alternative that is clean and easy to use. It is safe and leaves no chemical smells or residue to further upset patients. It is especially useful to continuously disinfect wards and isolation rooms and although it should never been seen as an alternative to regular and rigorous cleaning routines it does provide a belt and braces safety net.
UV-C light uses short-wave ultraviolet radiation, in the C band (200 to 280 nanometers). Also referred to as UVGI (ultraviolet germicidal irradiation), UV-C penetrates the outer structure of
the cell and alters the DNA molecule, preventing replication and causing cell death. Scientific research have demonstrated that UV-C germicidal light is an effective and proven method against
germs, bacteria and viruses.
It seems that UV-C light technology may offer a real and very effective way to combat Superbugs and with more hospitals trialling its use we can only hope that an end is in sight to the misery of MRSA and C.Difficle amongst our sick and elderly hospital patients.
Rose Latchman-Bloom is the Owner of MBR Imports UK Ltd who our distributors for the UVC Miracle Wand and associated UVC Light Technologies in the UK. The products provide
UVC germ control
for the home, hospitality sector, catering industry and childrens nurseries. Rose has many years of experience researching and is herself a trained healthcare professional.Web:
The Use of UV-C Light Technology in the Fight Against Superbugs}