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This award-winning blog supplements the articles in Hospital Infection Control & Prevention.

Check it don't infect it: Joint Commission creates checklist for endoscope reprocessing areas

With infections related to contaminated endoscopes a recurrent problem in health care, The Joint Commission has created the following checklist for assessing reprocessing areas to better ensure patient safety:

Environmental tour checklist for endoscope reprocessing areas

Physical space:

 Is the area sized appropriately in relation to the volume of equipment processed?

 Do staff put on personal protective equipment (PPE) before entering the area?

 Are staff wearing suitable PPE?

 Is there sufficient work space?

 Are cleaning supplies, storage areas, and other critical items clearly labeled?

 Is there an appropriate hand washing station?

 Is there an appropriate eyewash station?

 Are “dirty” areas physically separated from “clean” ones?

 Are there suitable storage areas for cleaned endoscopes? On visual inspection, do these areas look clean, free of debris and dry?

 If a cabinet serves as storage, does the cabinet have doors?

 Are endoscope storage containers dry and located off the ground”?

What is the route from the processor to the cabinet? (The route should not cross through the soiled processing area.)


 Is there negative air pressure to surrounding areas?

 Are air exchange rates and filtration efficiencies appropriate? Are there a minimum of 10 exchanges per hour, with at least two being with fresh, outside air?

 Is exhaust vented directly outside?

Documentation and training:

 Are staff aware of the number of endoscopes in the department?

 Does staff know how frequently these are maintained and how that maintenance occurs?

 When staff members are questioned, can they show where evidence-based practices and guidelines are located?

 When staff are asked about their training, does it appear they were trained using the guidelines?

 Are staff given periodic refresher training?