Central Sterile

Central Sterile

Did You Know?

The Sterile Processing Department is responsible for decontaminating, preparing, sterilizing, and controlling the surgical instruments and equipment used in all clinical areas of the hospital, including the largest revenue-generating department, the OR.

The healthcare industry is rife with reports of substandard sterilization practices causing a multitude of patient safety issues and added cost pressures for hospitals.

Steps can and should be taken to prevent these situations. The following might be a sign that it’s time to assess your sterile processing policies and procedures:

  • OR case delays or cancellations due to instrument issues
  • Surgical site infections or other hospital-acquired conditions resulting from instrument contamination
  • Physician complaints
  • Increased surgical instrument costs
  • Reports of dirty, missing, or incomplete surgical/patient care trays
  • An impending Joint Commission survey
  • Central Sterile Department staff retention or attendance problems

Our experts help providers discover ways to reduce hospital-acquired conditions, decrease the overall cost of central sterile processing, meet compliance standards, minimize turnaround times, and strengthen relationships across service levels.

Meet Our Expert

Mary Olivera
Senior Director, Sterile Processing

Mary Olivera has over 20 years of experience in numerous roles in healthcare sterile processing, distribution, and materials management. She actively participates in monitoring, surveying, and training interdepartmental staff in proper cleaning, decontamination, and sterilization practices, and is deeply committed to standardizing interdepartmental processes. Mary has extensive knowledge of TJC, AAMI, OSHA, CDC, and DOH regulations. She specializes in budgeting, change management, inventory management, process engineering, program and project management, supplier relationships, quality control, Six Sigma, supply chain, and total quality management.