Scotland rules on autoclaves

The Scottish Health Technologies Group has determined that there is lack of evidence to conclude that requiring the provision of vacuum sterilisers in primary care dental practices in Scotland would increase patient safety and thereby justify the cost. This advice statement means non-vacuum phase autoclaves can continue to be used in primary care dental settings in Scotland.


The Scottish Health Technologies Group also determined in an earlier advice statement that there is insufficient evidence to support a change from current practice to introduce the wrapping of dental instruments after sterilisation and prior to use.
The findings of the Group come on the back of a policy decision in November 2010 to allow manufacturers’ instructions to be followed on the validation, testing, maintenance and revalidation of decontamination equipment – a change from the previous quarterly testing specified in SHTM 2010 and SHTM 2030
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