Healthcare Technology Featured Article

February 27, 2014

UV Room Disinfection from Xenex Part of Plan to Improve HCAHPS Scores for Hospitals

By utilizing state-of-the art UV technology, Xenex Disinfection Services has become one of the world leaders in automated room disinfection. Their device burns off the germs, viruses and other bacteria that accumulate within an active hospital room with intense ultraviolet radiation in an extremely short period of time. The device ends up saving hospitals money in the long run by significantly reducing the rates of infection, but Xenex wants to prove their cost-effectiveness even further by starting a program to help improve patient survey scores within hospitals.

The program aims at raising the cleanliness scores for the Hospital Consumer Assesment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS). Already, Xenex customers like the Trinity Medical Center in Birmingham, Alabama are seeing results from the program and using the Xenex disinfection system. Not only are rooms much cleaner and patients less prone to infection, but the hospital’s HCAHPS scores moved up by a full quartile both in cleanliness as an individual category and overall. Because of this, the medical center received at-risk reimbursement funds thanks to using the Xenex room disinfection system.

The portable Xenex room disinfection system works by using a pulsed xenon ultraviolet light to eradicate infection-causing agents such as mold, fungus, bacterial spores and viruses along with several others. The disinfection cycle only takes five minutes to complete, which means that it can disinfect dozens of rooms per day without interfering with daily hospital operations. The device even uses reflectors and lenses to focus the UV light towards specific “high touch” surfaces in operating rooms, intensive care units, equipment rooms, public areas and of course, patient rooms themselves.

According to Dr. Mark Stibich, Xenex’s Chief Scientific Officer and co-founder, “There is peer-reviewed evidence that patient satisfaction is higher when patients and families are participants in an HCAHPS Improvement Program which informs them that the Xenex robot will disinfect their hospital room and boost their safety.” It seems that Xenex saves hospitals money while improving their overall quality of care and patient satisfaction, meaning that it is a win-win situation for both hospitals and Xenex. “At Xenex, Our mission is to destroy the miucroorganisms that cause infections and harm patients,” says Stibich, “It’s extremely rewarding for us that in addition to fewer infections, our customers are benefiting because patients understand that the hospital is going above and beyond to get their room clean – and HCAHPS scores and reimbursement go up as a result.”

Edited by Cassandra Tucker

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