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time to scrub needleless end caps

This isn't really a new subject, but I haven't yet found a definitive answer.  We're re-writing our policy/procedure re drawing labs and flushing central lines through positive-pressure needleless hubs(end caps).  How long should the hub be scrubbed before accessing it...3 secs....5-10-15?  I even saw 60 seconds in one procedure on the internet.

  5 or 10 seems like a reasonable time period.  I did it for 15 seconds...and that is a VERY long time.  I doubt most nurses would take that much time.  What are you all doing? Are there any articles on this subject?


The only published study

The only published study that I am aware of was in JAVA's fall 2007 issue. An in vitro study using both 70% alcohol and CHG scrubbing for 15 seconds, both agents for this time were effective. I have not seen any other studies, leaving the question of will a shorter period of time be as effective with either or both of the agents. I don't think anyone actually knows the answer at this point. 

Lynn Hadaway, M.Ed., RN, BC, CRNI

Lynn Hadaway, M.Ed., NPD-BC, CRNI

Lynn Hadaway Associates, Inc.

PO Box 10

Milner, GA 30257


Office Phone 770-358-7861

Gwen Irwin
There is another study that

There is another study that indicated that 3-5 seconds wasn't effective.  That time period allowed 67% of bacteria transfer.  It wasn't the intention of the study, but the info is in there.

Menyhay SZ, Maki DG. Disinfection of needleless catheter connectors and access ports with alcohol may not prevent microbial entry: the promise of a novel anticeptic-barrier cap. Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol. 2006;27:23-27.

Gwen Irwin

Austin, Texas

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