By Arthur Papineau, BS ChE, MBA and John Klostermyer, PhD, STERIS Life Sciences
Whether it is a new laboratory research facility or renovation of an existing facility, a sound commissioning process is vital to start-up success. The commissioning process ensures that the facility and equipment within the facility are ready for occupancy and use. Additionally, it ensures compliance with federal, state and local requirements. Part of this process includes a post-construction biodecontamination of the facility to ensure the safe integration of workers and animals into the new space. There are many factors that go into choosing the best method of biodecontamination.
This article discusses the successful use of hydrogen peroxide vapor in the biodecontamination of a new 100,000+ ft3 lab animal research facility for the purpose of a facility commissioning process. It will discuss the reasons why this process was chosen; the preparation of the facility; the execution of the biodecontamination; and the results.
There are many methods of biodecontamination available on the market today. Each method has its advantages and disadvantages depending upon the scope of the project and desired level of bioburden reduction. In this particular case, a very high standard was set. The Customer wanted to have the entire 100,000+ ft3 facility and equipment within it (i.e. computers, washers, cage racks, etc.) biodecontaminated with a validatable process that delivered a wide range of efficacy, a high level of material compatibility, the least amount of downtime possible, and a minimum of a 6-log reduction in bioburden.