News | May 01, 2008

UK Purchases 7,500 Infection-Resistant Keyboards

May 2, 2008 - The Connecting for Health Agency within the United Kingdom National Health Service (NHS) has purchased 7,500 Medigenic infection-resistant keyboards by Advanced Input Systems for use in hospitals across England, a move designed to help improve patient safety by preventing the spread of hospital infections.

Originally developed for University College London Hospital (UCLH), in a pilot project supported by NHS, the keyboards incorporate a flashing light to remind users to regularly clean the surface and sensors to measure the effectiveness of cleaning them. Keyboards are regarded as high-risk objects in hospitals, capable of harboring infections due to their many crevices and holes, which can hold an accumulation of debris. These new completely flat keyboards are covered with a hypoallergenic material resistant to bacterial growth.

The keyboard features a timed warning light that can be reportedly configured to meet the needs of different environments. The warning light will only go out if all the sensors are activated, indicating the keyboard has been thoroughly cleaned. An internal evaluation by UCLH has proved that the keyboard warning light reinforces awareness of the NHS ‘Clean your hands’ campaign, increasing hand washing by up to 10 percent.

Research by microbiologists at UCLH supported by NHS has shown that bacteria levels on the keyboards fall by 70 percent if they are cleaned every 12 hours.

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