Infection prevention and control guidelines

12. Planning a practice: design, fit-out, equipment and consumables


      1. Equipment

Last revised: 17 Jun 2024


When choosing equipment for the practice, consider their potential effect on the risk of infection transmission when new and after long-term use.

Reusable medical devices (eg surgical instruments)

When purchasing reusable medical devices such as instruments, ensure that they can be correctly reprocessed. Check the manufacturer’s advice on cleaning and sterilisation before buying.

Avoid devices that require chemical disinfection.

Choosing equipment for reprocessing reusable medical devices

All reprocessing equipment (including ultrasonic cleaner, washer-disinfectors, heat sealers, small sterilisers, drying cabinets, biological indicator incubators, and packaging systems) must conform to relevant equipment and/or safety standards.

If the practice opts to reprocess reusable medical devices onsite, this equipment should be selected to meet the following criteria:

  • The model is listed on the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods as a medical device
  • The model complies with an applicable Australian or international standard for performance and safety
  • The model is fit for purpose based on assessment of the practice’s needs according to the volume and type of reusable medical devices requiring reprocessing
  • There is an operator's manual containing documented and validated reprocessing instructions in accordance with ISO 17664-1
  • There is a documented schedule for periodic maintenance
  • A validation, calibration and maintenance contract can be initiated with the supplier or the practice's preferred provider.