Currently 39 state dental boards subscribe to the CDC Guidelines, which recommend that all dental handpieces and their attachments be heat sterilized between patients, adding if a semi-critical item is heat-sensitive, DHCP should replace it with a disposable alternative1.
In 11 states2, state dental practice acts mandate the heat sterilization of handpieces. This isn’t a recommendation. It’s the law. With infection control and sterilization of instruments becoming more transparent to patients, more states may be on the verge of adopting similar mandates.
ēsa fits a number of heat-sterilization-tolerant handpieces: Midwest® Shorty®, Rhino®, Star® Titan and our ēsamate® lube-free handpieces. Because ēsa® eliminates the nose cone, it’s 50 percent lighter and costs less to use than traditional handpiece and DPA connections.
ēsamate® handpieces are available in two models: ēsamate® ST, with an aluminum housing that weighs just two ounces; and our new ēsamate® MW, which features a stainless-steel housing and weighs 3.2 ounces. Both handpieces are heat-sterilization-tolerant, offer a 360° swivel and connect quickly and easily to ēsa® disposable prophy angles.
Both handpieces feature proven air-driven performance. No recharging or batteries required! They run at 5,000 rpm, which is perfect for prophys, and are backed by a 2-year warranty.
Some points to consider about CDC compliance include:
- How does my practice handle infection control procedures for low-speed or dental hygiene handpieces?
- Do we heat sterilize our low-speed handpieces after each patient?
- Are our low-speed handpieces heat-tolerant?
- What types of low-speed handpieces do we use?
Some dentists may have a few concerns, such as:
- “It’s too costly to purchase the necessary number of handpieces to ensure compliance with heat sterilization recommendation or requirements.”
- The CDC Guideline states, “If a semi-critical item does not come in contact with mucous membranes or non-intact skin,” heat sterilization is NOT required. In these states, using an ēsa® DPA, along with a plastic barrier on the handpiece, cuts the cost on infection control in half.
For samples of the ēsa DPA, or for more information, visit www.preventech.com/esa-dpa/.
1 “Summary of Infection Prevention Practices in Dental Settings” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, March 206, P14.
2 State Dental Practice Boards in CA, FL, KS, OH, OR, SC, VA and WA require semi-critical items be sterilized after each patient.
Editor’s Note: Sponsored by Preventech.