Copper helps hospitals drop infection rates by 60%, study says

Posted at 2:58 PM, Dec 18, 2018
and last updated 2018-12-18 16:58:05-05

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    Virginia & North Carolina (WTKR) — If you or someone you love is staying in a Sentara run hospital, then you might want to keep an eye on some pretty important copper.

Results published within The Journal of Hospital Infection shows results that Cupron infused copper in patient gowns, pillowcases, fitted and flat sheets, washcloths, bath towels, bath blankets and thermal blankets has helped drop infection rates at six Sentara hospitals in the Hampton Roads and North Carolina area.

The study published in November 2018 says that using the products by Cupron – a copper-based antimicrobial technology company – has significantly reduced occurrences of Clostridium difficile (C. diff) infections and infections caused by multi-drug resistant organisms (MDROs), including MRSA and VRE.

“This study of Cupron’s medical textiles alone validates their effectiveness in preventing hospital acquired infections in a real world clinical setting, along with a robust infection prevention protocol,” said Jacque Butler, Director of Infection Control and Prevention at Sentara Healthcare.

The Sentara hospitals included in the study were Sentara Obici Hospital, Sentara Halifax Regional Hospital, Sentara Martha Jefferson Hospital, Sentara Rockingham Medical Center, Sentara Albemarle Medical Center and Sentara Williamsburg Regional Medical Center.

A very large part of the study also included observing in all more than 175,000 patient days at Sentara hospitals and encompassed more than 1,000 patient beds.

According to the study, the large amount of patient days allowed for the study to examine three time periods: one (90 days), two (180 days) and three (240 days) in comparison to baseline periods. In comparison to baseline periods, one, two, and three, there were 61 percent, 41 percent and 43 percent reductions in infections per 10,000 patient hospitalization days caused by C. diff infections, respectively; and 60 percent, 40 percent and 37 percent reductions of infections per 1,000 patient days caused by C. diff infections and MDRO infections combined.

“Patient gowns and bed linens are the most frequently touched and contaminated surfaces in patient rooms,” said Chris Andrews, CEO of Cupron. “This multi-site, linens-only trial proves that as an additional layer of protection, surrounding patients with Cupron’s copper textiles lowers infection rates and improves outcomes.”

Cupron Medical Textiles is located in Richmond, Virginia, and has worked with Sentara on two previous peer-review studies.

Cupron first started working with Sentara Healthcare in 2014 to test it’s Cupron Enhanced EOS Solid Surfaces, which in 2012 was registered with the EPA to kill 99.9% of bacteria in under two hours. That same year, Cupron would receive alongside its partner EOS Surfaces the VA Governor’s Award for Science and Innovation.

In 2015, expanded development by Cupron brought Cupron Enhanced EOS overbed tables and bed rails to Sentara Norfolk General Hospital, Sentara Virginia Beach Hospital, Sentara Princess Anne Hospital.

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