Since SARS-CoV-2 wreaked havoc on our industry, new protocols and standards of care have become essential for addressing evolving infection control challenges. But after all this time, how have we been able to adapt? Has our quality (or pace) of care been compromised in our efforts to implement protective protocols?
I was recently introduced to a new solution for operatory disinfection that helped me move back toward seamless disinfection and operatory turnover—Metrex CaviWipes HP, part of the Kerr TotalCare portfolio. In a recent product trial and survey, Metrex gathered insights from clinicians about their experiences with the new wipe. Here are some of their thoughts, as well as more details about the key features of this disinfectant wipe.
Responses, and benefits, explained
One survey respondent said, “A one-minute universal contact time means that my coworkers and I won’t have to wait as long to finish turning over the room and setting it up, which gives us more time with each patient!”
First, I’ll discuss the broad-spectrum efficacy. These wipes provide a universal one-minute kill time. This means that they kill ALL pathogens tested and listed on the canister within one minute.1 This mean less time spent waiting for operatory disinfection between patients. Apparently, many other wipes claiming one-minute kill time are only effective against some of the listed pathogens, and actually require longer kill times for other pathogens listed.2 In contrast, CaviWipes HP are fully qualified by the EPA’s rigorous “emerging viral pathogen” claim and are effective against viruses of varying sizes and configurations.3 This means dental practices can rely on these wipes to kill even future variants or new viruses.
Another survey respondent said, “The lid was the first thing I noticed and loved. I even showed it to my coworker I was so impressed.”
The new green lid makes it easy to distinguish from other CaviWipes. It also has a deeper and wider “well” for easy closure and to hold moisture in the top of the upcoming wipe when the lid is closed. Even more impressive, the perforations through which the wipes are pulled are roomier and less sharp. Personally, I’ve jammed my fingers into product box perforations numerous times while trying to pull, and I don’t want to revisit those days. I‘ve found the wide orifice is a thoughtful and useful redesign.
Also, the lid features a ducktail-shaped opening tab, allowing quick, one-handed opening for those moments multitasking team members have only one hand available. This was very useful when I had on gloves and did not want to throw them both away to wipe down an object, such as after an x-ray. I could keep one glove on and clean with one hand. Considering the high prices of gloves, I appreciate this touch.
“They work great and smell good too,” one respondent said.
The gentle formula means some wonderful things for clinicians working at an accelerated pace—these wipes do not require the use of PPE.1 Although clinicians know it’s unwise to use traditional disinfecting wipes without PPE, we often do this despite our better judgment. The chemical formula of CaviWipes HP includes hydrogen peroxide as the active ingredient. It is alcohol free and will not cause skin irritation if used properly. This is a major game-changer, especially when we’ve already degloved and found ourselves needing disinfectant wipes quickly.
Also by Michelle MacLean
I will admit there are times I’ve used other formulas without PPE, so I appreciate the peace of mind provided by this gentle formula. It has a mild smell as compared to some other harsh formulations and products, which is familiar to most of us and is a simple hydrogen peroxide smell. This provides a sensory confirmation when an operatory has been flipped and is ready for setup. Several survey correspondents mentioned they like the smell compared to their previous wipe brand.
Lastly, this wipe eliminates the need for multistep disinfecting.1 Of course, any visibly soiled or bloody surfaces should be precleaned, but generally this does not apply to many surfaces. Even in this scenario I find that I am usually able to wipe down everything at once, and then let it air dry while I’m in sterilization cycling instruments. Then, I wipe down again (if necessary) any surfaces that had been visibly soiled. While these dry, I prep for and retrieve my patient. Because of the incredible one-minute kill time, my room is clean and dry by the time I return with the patient. Of course, check your soft surfaces for material compatibility, which is always recommended with chemical disinfectants.
CaviWipes HP is the third in a complete line of disinfecting wipes for any practice’s needs. This lineup provides the same quality that clinicians expect from CaviWipes since before the pandemic and formula changes. Try them all, and think critically about the benefits of each as you go. Then, enjoy the freedom of a few extra minutes every hour, and the ability to concentrate on patient care instead of infection control. I’m confident you’ll find one that suits your practice needs and budget.
Editor's note: This article appeared in the November 2022 print edition of RDH magazine. Dental hygienists in North America are eligible for a complimentary print subscription. Sign up here.
- EPA master label for CaviWipes HP. Accessed September 18, 2022.https://www3.epa.gov/pesticides/chem_search/ppls/046781-00018-20220125.pdf
- EPA master label for Optim1. Accessed September 18, 2022. https://www3.epa.gov/pesticides/chem_search/ppls/074559-00010-20220401.pdf
- About List N: Disinfectants for coronavirus (COVID-19). February 28, 2022. www.epa.gov/pesticide-registration/list-n-disinfectants-use-against-sars-cov-2