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WFHSS - World Forum for Hospital Sterile Supply

WFHSS Questions and Answers - Question Q01382 - English Version


WFHSS - World Forum for Hospital Sterile Supply :: Questions & Answers

WFHSS Questions and Answers - Question Q01382

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WFHSS - Questions & Answers - Quality Assurance - Q01382
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[06/02/2007] ...submittedFrom: Gabriel   Date: 6 February 2007, 10:11 [GMT]
Subject: recordkeeping

How long do we need to keep the autoclaves and washer disinfectors documentation? Is there a recommended policy of any organization for this?
Please help

Thank you very much

[07/02/2007] ...submittedFrom: (Australia)   Date: 7 February 2007, 01:23 [GMT]
Subject: Re: recordkeeping


I am not sure what country you are from, however the period of time for which records must be kept should align with the "statute of limitations" that applies for claims of negligence or other causes for litigation against the organisation that may take place in your legal system. I would consult your hospital's lawyers for advice.

For example in Australia the minimum period of time for records to be kept is 7 years but may be as long as 30 years and in some States, records must be kept indefinitely.

One other thing I have learnt is that you should not only keep the records for your equipment, but should also retain staff training records and copies of policies and procedures that have been followed in the past, even though they may have been updated several times by the time a legal claim may be made - so you need to know what happened or what the policy was "back then".

I hope this helps,

Terry McAuley

[09/02/2007] ...submittedFrom: (United States)   Date: 9 February 2007, 23:10 [GMT]
Subject: Re: recordkeeping

Good day Gabriel,

Question Q00178 is similar to your question and may help answer your question.

Warm Regards,
Pete Bobb

[11/02/2007] ...submittedFrom: Gabriel   Date: 11 February 2007, 06:50 [GMT]
Subject: Re: recordkeeping

Thank you very much miss terry.

Follow - up to the question you have a format for policy and procedure guide for c.s.s.d.? Please help

Thanks a million,


[11/02/2007] ...submittedFrom: (Belgium)   Date: 11 February 2007, 08:05 [GMT]
Subject: Re: recordkeeping

For policy and procedures I want to refer you to our Education pages and in particular to the Recommendations by the Quality Task Group:

  • [32] How Quality Management is Structured in CSSD Practice,
  • [37] Guide to Compilation of Standard Operating Procedures, and
  • [44] Compilation of Procedures.

Best regards,
Wim Renders

[12/02/2007] ...submittedFrom: (Australia)   Date: 12 February 2007, 12:39 [GMT]
Subject: Re: recordkeeping

Hi Gabriel,

I do not have a proforma policy and procedure guide or manual for CSSD that would help you - as Wim point out, the Recommendations of the Quality Task Group are a good place to start.

My advice for policies and procedures is simple - if your country has guidelines and standards available, then make your policy statement or outcome statement the same as those standards and guidelines. The procedure then explains how you achieve that policy or outcome statement in your facility. In some cases, the policy statement may link into several different sets of procedures or work instructions.

For example, say the Standard or guideline in your country states that you must effectively clean medical devices prior to sterilisation - then your policy will be "Medical devices will be effectively cleaned prior to sterilisation".

Next you will develop procedures or work instructions that tell your staff what it is they have to do to achieve this outcome. Therefore, this policy statement may link into work instructions for manual cleaning of instruments, validation, monitoring and maintenance of automated cleaning equipment, how to load the washer-disinfector correctly and so on....just to name a few.

I can tell you that in Australia we have a very useful standard for reprocessing of reusbale medical devices - it is a practical standard, not an equipment specification or technical standard. As such it can provide a useful basis for CSSD managers to begin to develop policies and procedures for the many aspects involved in performing this very important work.

It can be purchased on-line from - type in AS/NZS 4187 into the search box.

I hope this helps


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WFHSS - World Forum for Hospital Sterile Supply :: Questions & Answers

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