Our experience with creating, and living up to, objective cleanliness goals will help us make sure we are cleaning to the highest possible standard in medical environments
Jackson, MI (Vocus) April 21, 2009
Midbrook, Inc., a Jackson, MI based company, has a long history in the automotive parts cleaning industry. For 30 years, Midbrook has been manufacturing their “Hurricane” brand aqueous parts cleaning systems for numerous automotive suppliers and manufacturers. Midbrook has also begun manufacturing medical decontamination equipment.
Automotive components may not immediately come to mind when a person thinks about clean, but standards in the industry are very stringent. Parts must be as clean as possible in order to ensure that they function at a high level throughout the life of the vehicle. To meet that goal, automotive suppliers and manufacturers have devised a number of quality and cleanliness (decontamination) standards. Midbrook is an expert at crafting, as well as meeting, these standards with their laboratory and cleaning equipment.
Midbrook’s recent expansion into medical decontamination has been aided by their previous experience.
“Our experience with creating, and living up to, objective cleanliness goals will help us make sure we are cleaning to the highest possible standard in medical environments,” said Midbrook Business Development Director Jamie Crowley.
Changing from automotive cleaning to medical decontamination has necessitated that Midbrook develop new testing methodologies. Automotive parts need to be visually clean and free of debris in order to function. This can be tested visually, and with equipment like Millipore or Gravimetric tests, which allow the user to detect microscopic contamination on the part that is impossible to see with the naked eye. Similarly, medical decontamination requires that the invisible bacteria residing on the surface or tool be removed for patient safety.
“We employ a variety of different testing methodologies, including quick swab ATP testing, to see if a surface or instrument is decontaminated,” said Crowley. “That allows us to objectively measure how well our own decontamination process is working, so that we can constantly refine our approach when necessary.”
In order to meet stringent decontamination specifications in the automotive field, Midbrook developed their Technology Center to test parts, develop cleaning processes, and refine wash chemistry.
“Our Technology Center has extensive experience in cleanliness testing, and we’re always on the hunt for new methods that can improve our ability to clean,” said Crowley. “And by extension, we can offer those services to our customers so they can monitor their own facilities and equipment.”
ATP Testing, using a swab method, is one of the new products Midbrook uses and offers for use to test for proper medical decontamination. ATP (adenosine triphosphate) is the energy transfer material found in cells. Measuring the amount of ATP present on a surface allows non-visible cellular contamination to be detected.
“ATP testing detects non-visible surface or fluid contamination via using the ATP that is present to ‘fire’ a synthetic version of the bioluminescence chemistry found in fireflies,” said Midbrook Technology Center Director Jack Griffes.
“A reagent is used to force ATP out of the cells where it then interacts with the bioluminescence chemistry, allowing us to get a quick reading of how much ATP is present on the surface,” said Griffes.
The swab method of testing used by Midbrook works within minutes, which allows for quick correction of decontamination problems.
“In medical environments, it’s important to work quickly and remedy any decontamination failures,” said Crowley. “These decontamination tests return a result in about three minutes, so any issue can be rapidly identified and workers in the facility can begin working on a solution to the issue.”
“Our goal is always to develop decontamination or cleaning processes that achieve consistent, repeatable results,” said Crowley.
“With our new ATP swab testing to deploy in the medical field, we are confident that we will be able to achieve that goal and help facilities meet their decontamination goals.”