The Hohenstein Institute puts antimicrobial products and hygiene precautions to the test.
Antimicrobial products can play an important role in preventing hospital-acquired infections.
The Hohenstein Institute, Boennigheim, Germany, tests products that incorporate antimicrobial technologies for their compliance with international standards and certifies their effectiveness on the basis of type testing. Products come from a range of sectors, including textiles, surfaces, consumer goods, cleaning materials and workwear. Another testing area is the monitoring and evaluation of textile hygiene, including the microbiological purity of laundry and the disinfecting and hygienic effectiveness of washing procedures.
Dirk Höfer, director of the department of hygiene, environment and medicine at the Hohenstein Institute, recently explained an independent research project the institute is conducting to find out how effective antimicrobial textiles are in breaking infection chains in care situations. To obtain realistic results, the study is being conducted in cooperation with hospitals, care homes and the textile industry.
The goal of the project is to provide scientific evidence for the use of antimicrobial textiles and to improve public perception of their use and effectiveness. If the field trials are successful, the institute will produce a matrix for the use of antimicrobial textiles in healthcare situations, indicating the kind of performance data for textiles that would suggest antimicrobial products could be expected to be effective in a healthcare situation.