Provided by OSHA Review, Inc.

Items or surfaces likely to become contaminated and that are difficult to clean and disinfect—such as computer equipment—are recommended to be protected to prevent contamination, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Guidelines for Infection Control in Dental Health-Care Settings (2003).

Here are a few infection-control tips concerning computer equipment in your operatories:

  1. First and foremost, follow the manufacturer’s directions.
    When considering decontamination procedures for high-tech equipment—including computers, digital imaging equipment, and intraoral cameras—following manufacturer directions will provide the best results, with the least damage to the equipment.

  2. Since liquid surface disinfectants could harm computer equipment, either place the equipment in a location where it won’t be contaminated, or use impervious barriers—either reusable or disposable.

    Disposable impervious barriers should be used to protect items or surfaces likely to become contaminated and are difficult to clean and disinfect (such as computer equipment in operatories) according to the CDC’s Guidelines for Infection Control in Dental Health-Care Settings (2003). These should be changed between patients.

    Reusable impervious barriers (such as clear, plastic shields) are appropriate for computer equipment unlikely to be touched during treatment (such as the hard drive or monitor). These must be cleaned and disinfected between patients.

  3. Finally, don’t forget good hygiene. Before touching any equipment, make sure hands are clean.

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