CHA News Article

HVAC Guidance Available for ORs, Sterile Processing Departments

An HVAC task force, whose members include the American Hospital Association’s American Society for Healthcare Engineering (ASHE), has issued the attached interim guidance to help health care facilities maintain appropriate temperature and humidity control in operating rooms and sterile processing departments while it works to achieve consensus on conflicting standards. Among other actions, the task force said it plans to explain the conflicting standards to accreditors and state licensing agencies and ask them to work with health care organizations to establish a plan for resolving variance.

In addition to ASHE, task force members include the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers; Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation; Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology; Association of periOperative Registered Nurses; and the Facility Guidelines Institute. 

CHA and the California Society of Healthcare Engineering will continue to work together and advocate that ASHE work with the manufacturers, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and The Joint Commission, as this is a national issue (see previous CHA News article). In the meantime, each hospital and health care system will need to review and discuss its internal policies and procedures. This is a time-sensitive issue for advocacy efforts, so members who have specific questions, comments or concerns should contact Cheri Hummel at chummel@calhospital.org  by Friday, October 23.

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