CDC study validates room disinfection technology's effectiveness

Randomised clinical trials were used to validate the effectiveness of the Tru-D SmartUVC hospital disinfection technology

UV disinfection robots entered the healthcare market almost a decade ago as a new technology designed to reduce healthcare associated infections (HAIs). Yet, minimal scientific endorsement has delayed their acceptance as a gold standard in infection prevention, leaving many patients at risk of developing deadly but preventable infections.

Last month saw the release of the results of the first ever randomised clinical trial on UV disinfection – Benefits of Enhanced Terminal Room Disinfection (BETR-D). Funded by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the trial employed the Tru-D SmartUVC disinfection device to prove that using measured germicidal doses of UV light in healthcare settings can reduce the risk of infection caused by multi-drug resistant organisms by 30%.

The trial, which took four years of rigorous planning, methodic execution and detailed evaluation, has not only statistically proved the real-world impact that Tru-D has on patient outcomes, it has also validated the method of measured germicidal UV disinfection, says the manufacturer Tru-D.

Because of the strict requirements for qualifying scenarios and protocols, as well as blind participation, randomised clinical trials are the most arduous way to determine the cause-effect relationship between a treatment and outcome and to determine the consequent cost effectiveness of that treatment. Therefore, treatments that are often studied in randomised clinical trials must have validated merit in smaller third-party trials. Tru-D was the only treatment technology selected for the BETR-D study due to its unique, proven ability to reduce environmental pathogens by measuring the necessary reflective dose required to thoroughly disinfect a hospital room, says the company.

Prior to the conclusion of the BETR-D study, Tru-D's measured germicidal UV disinfection had been validated in multiple third-party studies.

'Many leaders in infection prevention across the country were waiting for a randomised clinical trial to be announced for UV disinfection, so this was a big win accelerating adoption of Tru-D technology in the fight against infections across many levels of healthcare in the US,' said Chuck Dunn, president and CEO of Tru-D.

For the BETR-D study, infection control researchers from Duke University Medical Center in Durham, North Carolina, and The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill collected data across nine hospitals and 24,589 eligible patients for 122,873 patient days. Researchers compared four different cleaning and disinfection scenarios: two of which included terminal disinfection of the patient room with the Tru-D system. Each hospital randomly rotated through the four cleaning protocols in each of the four seven-month phases. Researchers eliminated confounding factors that may skew the results and concluded Tru-D integration into terminal cleaning protocols reduced HAIs up to 30%.