The National and State Healthcare-Associated Infections Progress Report: How Can Providers Prevent HAIs?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) 2019 National and State Healthcare-Associated Infections Progress Report provides the national- and state-level HAI incidence data for 2019 in the four major healthcare settings: acute care hospitals, critical access hospitals, inpatient rehabilitation facilities, and long-term acute care hospitals. The report is designed to assess problem areas and provide the information needed in order to implement changes that will increase patient safety and ensure that the best and safest medical care is provided to all.

In the report, the CDC states that on any given day, one in 31 patients in the US acquires at least one HAI, highlighting the need for improvements in patient care in healthcare facilities. Even though progress has been made in recent years, more changes need to be implemented in order to prevent healthcare-associated infections and increase patient safety.

One of the top ways to reduce the spread of HAIs in healthcare settings is through the use of disposable medical devices. Disposable medical devices are instruments that are used by only one person, only one time, and are then disposed of after use. Single-use devices can be a great tool for reducing the risk of transferring germs and infections among patients, therefore reducing the rate of healthcare-associated infections. Because these tools are only used by one patient, and only used one time, they help to reduce the spread of infection by person-to-person contact.

Hospitals opting for disposable medical devices could lead to a significant reduction in the number of healthcare-associated infections. Disposable medical devices not only make it easy to provide patients with the care they need by making it a simple process, but they also greatly reduce the time spent away from patients as there is no need for medical staff to disinfect reusable devices after every use. Eliminating the need to clean reusable devices would allow providers to spend more time focusing on providing the best possible care to all of their patients.

Medical Indicators Partners with Maness Veteran Medical to Bring Their Innovative, Single-Use Thermometers to America’s Veterans and Active Military Members

Medical Indicators, Inc. is pleased to announce their partnership with Maness Veteran Medical, LLC.  Partnering with Maness Veteran Medical, a Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB), will enable Medical Indicators, the only manufacturer of clinically-accurate, single-use thermometers in the world manufacturing all of their products in the U.S., to bring their innovative, disposable thermometers to America’s veterans, the U.S. Department of Defense, and active military service members.

Medical Indicators’ line of single-use thermometers, including NexTemp®, NexTemp® Ultra, TempaDOT® and TraxIt® thermometers, features a patented chemistry system that utilizes heat-sensitive crystals to provide the most accurate temperature reading available on the market today. In addition to their accuracy, all of Medical Indicators’ thermometers are individually wrapped and intended to be disposed of after use – offering doctors, nurses and their patients maximum infection control. Disposing of the thermometer after use virtually eliminates the risk of spreading germs, illnesses and infections, which is a critical component of patient care, now more than ever.

“Medical Indicators has worked with VA Hospitals throughout the U.S. for many years,” said Joel Welde, Medical Indicators’ Chief Executive Officer, “and through this partnership, we’re excited to expand our reach and provide the absolute best in patient care to even more of our nation’s most deserving.”

For more than 35 years, Medical Indicators’ thermometers have been trusted by top physicians, national health systems and teaching institutions around the world. In an effort to further the advancement of veteran and active military care, Medical Indicators is proud to have the dedicated team at Maness Veteran Medical be their exclusive SDVOSB distributor.

The Benefits of Switching to Single-Use Medical Devices

Single-use medical devices are those that are used one time, by one patient, during one procedure. After a single-use medical device has been used, it is disposed. There are many benefits to using disposable medical devices in place of their reusable alternatives. An OBP Medical article titled Top Reasons to Switch to Single-Use Medical Devices explains the many benefits of switching to disposable medical devices.

Safety. Arguably, the most significant benefit to using single-use medical devices is that disposing of the device immediately after use improves patient safety. Single-use medical devices reduce the risk of surgical site infections and cross-contamination. If only one person is using the device, and the device is used correctly, the possibility of spreading germs and diseases among patients and medical personnel is virtually eliminated. According to the CDC, disposable items improve patient safety by eliminating the risk of patient-to-patient contamination because the item is discarded, and therefore not used on another patient. With increased attention being paid to infection control, single-use medical devices can provide peace of mind, improve patient safety and can greatly reduce the risk of cross-contamination.

Time. In order to ensure that reusable medical devices are safe to use with other patients, they must be cleaned after every use. Taking the time to clean reusable devices means less time spent with patients. Most single-use medical devices are ready to use upon opening, saving medical professionals a significant amount of time. Single-use devices, also, eliminate the need for medical staff to clean, disinfect, and sterilize reusable devices. With minimal preparation and effort, single-use medical devices can significantly increase a facility’s efficiency.

Cost. Although single-use medical devices may seem like a more expensive option, it’s usually a more cost-effective one in the long run. Many reusable devices require the purchase of additional accessories in order to ensure the device is safe for use among multiple patients. However, disposable products don’t require the purchase of additional accessories, and there’s no additional costs associated with cleaning, calibrating or repairing disposable devices. Reusable devices require the re-purchasing of decontamination supplies on a regular basis, and there is also the additional cost of machine maintenance, utility use, and employee time, which can greatly increase costs. Single-use supplies can provide the same quality as reusable devices without the additional cost of ongoing maintenance and upkeep. In the end, providers will see continued savings after making the switch to single-use medical supplies.

At Medical Indicators, we’re dedicated to manufacturing the highest-quality single-use thermometers for our customers. Our disposable thermometers save users time, energy and money, and most importantly, provide maximum infection control – ensuring the safety of both patients and their providers.

Are Infrared Thermometers Accurate?

Yesterday, the Food and Drug Administration issued an alert to warn consumers about the inaccuracy of thermal imaging devices. Infrared thermometers have become an increasingly popular way of taking temperatures since the COVID-19 pandemic started, with many privately-owned businesses such as hair salons, airlines, schools, workplaces, and public venues using them as a way to monitor temperatures before allowing people into their establishments.

But are these thermometers accurate? According to the FDA, improper use of thermal imaging systems may lead to inaccurate temperature readings, which can present serious public health risks. If these thermometers are giving inaccurately-low readings, then people who are sick could infect others without even knowing it. In the same way, infrared thermometers could also give a falsely-high temperature reading, resulting in an individual not being able to continue with their plans because they were required to fall below a certain temperature threshold and according to the infrared thermometer, they did not.

The Washington Post also issued an article yesterday, further analyzing the FDA’s alert. According to Drew Harwell from the Washington Post, a lot of companies jumped into the infrared thermometer market this past year due to the coronavirus pandemic, with many having no experience or knowledge on manufacturing these devices prior to this year. These medical devices used to require testing, known as 510(k) clearance, that would test the safety and effectiveness of the product. This was an important process before the coronavirus epidemic happened, but because of supply and demand, the FDA had to lift the 510(k) clearance requirement rule in order to give consumers access to more thermometry options. The fact that these thermometers are no longer being tested before being put on the market for consumers to purchase could question their validity.

The FDA lists several requirements that need to be met in order to provide a more accurate reading, including using the device in the proper environment and/or location as external temperatures could affect the reading; the systems need to be set up correctly and calibrated regularly to ensure they are operating effectively; and the person handling the device must be properly trained on its setup, usage, cleaning and calibrating. If all of these steps are not followed correctly, consumers could suffer from inaccurate readings.

Although thermal imaging devices may seem like an easy and use-friendly option, these thermometers have proven their inability to provide consistent and accurate readings. Due to these inaccuracies, these thermometers should not be a trusted source when measuring a person’s body temperature. Instead, clinically-accurate thermometers should be used. All of Medical Indicators’ thermometers are accurate to ±0.2ºF or ±0.1ºC, which is the highest level of accuracy available on the market today. Visit our website to learn more about how Medical Indicators’ thermometers provide a safe, reliable and accurate temperature reading, each and every time they are used.

Why Should Your Medical Staff Choose Single-Use Thermometers?

The risk of transmitting infectious diseases from patients to medical staff, as well as from medical staff to other patients, is a significant concern in hospital and clinical settings. Infection transfer can lead to germs and illnesses quickly spreading throughout a facility, leading to an increase in the rate of Healthcare Associated Infections (HAI) among patients and staff. Protective measures should be implemented and followed by all medical staff to ensure the safety and well-being of both the patients and their providers. One of the best ways to significantly reduce the spread of germs and infections is with the use of single-use medical devices.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration define single-use or disposable medical devices as those strictly intended for use on one patient during only one procedure. In recent years, there has been an industry-wide focus, especially in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, to implement methods and procedures directly focused on reducing the risk of HAIs. The use of disposable medical supplies is a reliable option for ensuring that all devices are decontaminated and safe for use on patients. Single-use medical devices can protect patients from developing life-threatening infections from cross-contamination or unsafe conditions during medical procedures and treatments.

A research study entitled Importance of disposable medical materials and instruments in the prevention of intrahospital infections, tested disposable and reusable medical instruments to establish the difference between their level of protection from microorganisms. The report found that nearly 30% of the reusable medical devices tested positive for isolated bacteria; while the entire control group of disposable products tested as sterile. The frequency of samples that tested negative for bacteria among the disposable products is highly significant because these results confirm that the level of protection is higher if disposable products are used. The study suggests that reusable medical devices and products should be replaced by disposable materials to decrease the incidence of infections.

When healthcare facilities and hospital systems switch from reusable to single-use medical devices, the benefits are invaluable. Visit Medical Indicators’ website to learn more about our disposable thermometers, and how they can ensure the safety and well-being of both your patients and your staff.

Medical Indicators Disposable Thermometers

The Fight Against COVID-19 Continues

Even though people are starting to get a sense of relief now that vaccine distribution has begun, we must still take precautions to protect ourselves and others from COVID-19. The pandemic has gone on for much longer than anyone initially anticipated, leading many to wonder if it’ll ever truly end; however, there is hope. As more and more people are getting vaccinated, in the United States as well as around the world, an end to this pandemic does seem possible after all – but we all need to continue to do our part.

There are many precautions that we can take in order to protect ourselves from COVID-19. Wearing a mask is an important way to not only protect yourself, but to protect those around you as well. Other helpful tips include washing your hands regularly for the recommended 20 seconds and to keep a safe, 6-foot distance from others when in public. The CDC also lists regular temperature checks as one of the top ways to reduce the spread of COVID-19, so be sure to monitor your temperature regularly, especially if you’re feeling under the weather. Medical Indicators’ line of clinically-accurate, single-use thermometers are widely used by hospitals, schools and businesses, as well as individuals and families. They are lightweight and compact, easily fitting into a purse, a first-aid kit, your backpack, or even your wallet – making them the perfect option for when you’re on the go. In addition, they don’t require the purchase of batteries or other additional accessories, they don’t need to be calibrated prior to use, and they don’t need to be cleaned in between uses – saving users both time and money.

As employees start returning to their offices and schools begin to see the return of students, we need to stay vigilant now more than ever. While the end is in sight, we’re not there yet. Monitoring your temperature, washing your hands, maintaining a safe social distance and wearing your mask will help in the continued fight against COVID-19.

For more information and helpful tips relating to the coronavirus pandemic, visit the CDC’s COVID-19 resource center.

NexTemp® Thermometers Included in Becker’s Hospital Review’s 100 Infection Control Products to Know in 2019

Becker’s Hospital Review issued their annual 100 Infection Control Products to Know for 2019, and for the second year in a row, Medical Indicators is proud to have our NexTemp® thermometers included among such highly beneficial products. The annual list is comprised of products that aim to increase patient safety and contribute to the reduction in the spread of infections. Infection control is crucial in healthcare settings because a doctor’s number one goal is to keep their patients safe. So it’s essential that they find and use products that contribute to the safety and well-being of their patients. The products included in this year’s list include diagnostic instruments, UV disinfectants, hygienic products, disinfectants and detergents, health technology, catheters and central lines, and surgical supplies, among others. They were chosen because they help to fight against Healthcare Associated Infections (HAI’s), which are most commonly caused by the spreading of germs in a medical facility from patient-to-patient, as well as patient-to-provider.

Medical Indicators’ NexTemp thermometers made the list for the second year in a row, and our NexTemp® Ultra thermometers also made the list this year. Our NexTemp® and NexTemp® Ultra thermometers are similar in design and production, with the only difference being that NexTemp® offers a 20-second temperature retention time, while NexTemp® Ultra offer an extended 60-second temperature retention time. Meaning with NexTemp® you have 20 seconds to read and record the temperature after removing the thermometer from the patient’s mouth; whereas with NexTemp® Ultra you have a full minute.

All of Medical Indicators’ thermometers, including both NexTemp® and NexTemp® Ultra, offer maximum infection control by limiting the use of the thermometer to only one individual. Disposing of the thermometer after use virtually eliminates the risk of spreading germs and infections by providing a clean instrument that is used once and then discarded. The majority of thermometers on the market today are reusable, meaning they are used on multiple patients. But this practice of reusing thermometers among multiple patients can lead to the spread of unwanted germs and infections if the products aren’t properly cleaned and disinfected after every use.

Medical Indicators’ Single-Use Thermometers Featured in Becker’s Hospital Review’s 100 Infection Control Products to Know in 2018

Medical Indicators is proud to be included in Becker’s Hospital Review’s 2018 list of 101 Infection Control Products to Know. Becker’s Hospital created the list to provide consumers with information on the best product options for infection control. The list highlights the importance of patient safety and recognizes the companies and medical devices that contribute to it. The list was compiled after examining the technology used in and the products designed to disinfect medical instruments and operating rooms, reduce preventable complications, stop the spread of germs and make surgery safer for patients. They tested products from all over the world and chose those that they believed were most impressive, and met or exceed their expectations. Among the products tested were UV disinfectants, diagnostic instruments, catheters and central lines, health technology, and surgical procedure products, among other items, designed for infection control.

Medical Indicators’ NexTemp thermometers were included as one of the best options one of the medical products mentioned due to the maximum infection protection they provide. NexTemp single-use thermometers are highly-accurate thermometers that are designed to be used once and then discarded. Their disposability protects against the spread of germs and infections by providing a clean instrument that is used only one time, with only one patient.

Our NexTemp thermometers feature a patented chemistry system known as liquid crystal technology that uses heat-sensitive crystals to offer the highest level of accuracy available on the market today. In addition to their infection protection in a hospital or clinical setting, they are also perfect for individual, at-home, or on-the-go use. They are compact, lightweight and can be taken with you anytime, anywhere. They fit easily into a first-aid kit, medicine cabinet, purse, diaper bag or even your carry on suitcase. Our NexTemp® thermometers provide convenience and ease while also contributing to patient safety – the number one focus of Medical Indicators.

Patient Safety Awareness Week 2017

MII is proudly celebrating and promoting this year’s National Patient Safety Foundation’s Patient Safety Awareness Week. The NPSF works to bring together and engage health care professionals and patients to help spread the important message of increasing awareness about patient safety among health professionals and the public.

For more information on the 2017 NPSF’s Awareness Week, please click here to visit their website.

April 7th-10th 2017

It’s International Infection Prevention Week

To highlight the importance of infection prevention and raise awareness of everyone’s role in protecting the public, Medical Indicators (MII) is proud to support International Infection Prevention Week (IIPW), which occurs globally Oct. 16th-22nd. The theme of IIPW 2016 is “Break the Chain of Infection”,  and it aims to spread the message of the role both the public and professionals in stopping infections in the community and healthcare settings.

For more information on IIPW 2016, please visit: