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Sterile Supply

Safe and Secure Medical Equipment Supply Service

Osaka University Hospital's Central Sterile Supply Department was established on February 20, 1971 in order to provide efficient and reliable sterilization, by centralizing the cleaning and sterilization of reusable medical devices and procurement of single-use medical devices, which had previously been done independently in each section and department. With the relocation to the Suita district in September 1993, its scale and functions were greatly expanded. Cleaning and disinfection of flexible endoscopes were centralized in April 2008, and initial washing by each department was abolished in April 2009 as we proceed with the centralization process. Duties of Sterile Supply also include cleaning, sterilization and maintenance of complex surgical equipment used for surgical robots and delicate equipment used for dental treatment. The staff who manage these operations are qualified first-class sterilization technicians, of which there are only about 400 nationwide. In this way, Sterile Supply guarantees the quality of medical equipment that is reused in the hospital by its highly educated and professionally qualified staff, striving for safe and reliable medical equipment supply service.

Staff

Sterile Supply's staff consists of the director (professor), a deputy director (first-class sterilization technician), 1 technical staff (first-class sterilization technician), and 1 special technical staff (first-class sterilization technician).
Cleaning, disinfection, and sterilization of reusable medical devices (RMDs) are performed by 59 outsourced employees.
The overall logistics of single-use devices (SUDs) from ordering to inventory is handled by 17 outsourced employees (SPD: Supply Processing and Distribution).

Operations

Washing

Contaminants such as blood, body fluids and minute tissues and micro-organisms adhere to reusable medical devices used in wards, outpatient clinics and surgery. To remove them, washing is performed by combining the chemical action of detergent and the physical effects of water flow, ultrasound, and brushing.

Washer-Disinfector (WD)
Washer-Disinfector (WD)
  • Washer-Disinfector (WD)
    Contaminants are removed by spraying with a pressurized water stream, and disinfection is done with hot water.
  • Vacuum boiling washer
    The cleaning fluid is boiled and bumped by the pressure change to remove the dirt on the immersed items for cleaning. It can be used to clean items that are difficult to reach by spraying.
  • Ultrasonic washer
    Removes hard-to-remove contaminants and invisible fine contaminants with ultrasonic waves.

Sterilization

Steam sterilization (autoclave), low temperature steam formaldehyde (LTSF) sterilization, and hydrogen peroxide gas plasma sterilization are used.

Steam sterilization (autoclave)
Steam sterilization (autoclave)
  • Steam sterilization (autoclave)
    This is a method of killing micro-organisms by denaturing their proteins using the thermal energy of saturated steam. It is used to sterilize medical equipment that can withstand high temperature and high pressure, such as steel articles and linen. It is widely used because it is safe and low cost.
  • Low temperature steam formaldehyde (LTSF) sterilization
    A mixture of formaldehyde and cold steam kills micro-organisms. It is used to sterilize medical equipment such as flexible endoscopes and plastics that cannot withstand high temperature and high pressure. The scope of application is almost the same as ethylene oxide gas (EOG) sterilization.
  • Hydrogen peroxide gas plasma sterilization
    Free radicals generated by applying high frequency energy to hydrogen peroxide steam kill micro-organisms. It is used to sterilize medical equipment that cannot withstand high temperature and high pressure. Although sterilization time is short, the cost is relatively high compared to the others. In addition, it cannot be used to sterilize paper, gauze, linen (textiles), etc.

Washing and disinfection of flexible endoscopes

In addition to the gastrointestinal and bronchial endoscopes used in diagnosis, treatment and tests at the Endoscopy Center, this center also cleans and disinfects flexible endoscopes used for outpatients of Otorhinolaryngology, Urology and Gynecology, processing about 25,000 a year.

  • Automated endoscope reprocessors (AER)
    All pipelines are cleaned with a pressurized stream of water and disinfected with a high-level disinfectant.
The staff selects cleaning, disinfection, and sterilization methods according to the form and material of medical equipment, and endeavors to provide safe and secure medical equipment supply services.

Overview of Facilities

Washers

Washer-disinfector (WD) 6
Vacuum boiling washer (RQ/RN) 3
Tabletop ultrasonic washer 1
Automated endoscope reprocessor (AER) 13
Thermostatic immersion bath 7
Thermostatic bath with ultrasound 3
Thermostatic bath with water supply function 5

Sterilizers

Steam sterilizer (584 L) 2
Steam sterilizer (858 L) 3
Formaldehyde/steam hybrid sterilizer (584 L) 1
Hydrogen peroxide gas plasma sterilizer (100NX/NX/100S) 4

Disposables room

In pursuit of economic efficiency and rational management, the purchase, supply, and inventory management of single-use medical devices have been centralized under outsourced management. A logistics management system using RFID (radio frequency identification) was introduced in 2021 to improve operational efficiency such as management of expiration dates and unmoving stocks.

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Information for Outpatients

Consultation times

First visit 8:30 am to 11:00 am
Revisit 8:30 am to 11:30 am
Revisit with appointment 8:30 am to 3:00 pm

※First-time visitors to Osaka University Hospital must have a referral from a physician.

Outpatient consultation days

Monday to Friday

Non-consultation days

Saturdays, Sundays, Holidays New Year’s Holidays: Dec. 29 to Jan. 3

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