Taking speed, efficiency and user-friendly operation to new heights, Mocom Australia's B Futura Steriliser is the epitome of advanced medical equipment innovation.
It is specifically designed to offer a level of performance that will impress technologically demanding professionals, making it the future of full sterilisation cycle traceability.
Achieving an optimal equipment sterilisation process is all about enhancing user workflow, according to Mocom's Jim Owen, who highlights five major features that distinguish the B Futura from its rivals: the colour touch screen display; the delayed start function; the on-screen release with individual PIN code; the bar code printer; and the multiple connection options.
"The B Futura saves time and stress via simpler compliance. Its benefits directly complement the steps a medical practice must take every single day," says Owen.
Colour touch screen display
The colour touch screen display is a new feature of the B Futura that resembles tablet technology. It features clear and easy-to-understand icons in order to simplify both cycle selection and overall operation.
"Immediate cycle selection saves time. The screen includes 6 sterilisation cycles, one of which is programmable, allowing the user the choice to control the different types of instruments being sterilised," Owen explains.
Delayed start function
The delayed start function allows the user to program sterilisation and test cycles to start at any time of the day, which is especially beneficial for programming essential Vacuum and Helix tests to begin prior to opening the surgery in the morning.
The Vacuum test is to check that there are no leaks in the chamber of the steriliser, as it's critical no air remains inside when the machine is operated. The Helix test is an air removal and steam penetration test that ensures the steriliser is functioning properly.
"You would normally run these tests first thing in the morning, and it would take approximately 40 minutes. That means 40 minutes without sterilisation and therefore 40 minutes the instruments within the practice are out of use," Owen says.
"However, this new delayed start function enables you to program these tests to start at any time of the day you like. Ideally you would program it the night before to start at, for example, 5am the next day.
"By the time you arrive at the practice in the morning the tests are completed, so you can check for two positive results and you're free to start working. Not all B-type sterilisers include that functionality."
Owen suggests that dental practices in particular will benefit from this time-saver. "Dental practices are very busy;they tend to run the cycles back-to-back all day. Whatever extra time they can create is highly beneficial because it leads to more throughput and therefore greater revenue."
On-screen release with individual PIN code
Traceability is an important element of sterilisation. With the user management system, users of the B Futura can be identified by their unique PIN code. The machine is programmed to ask the user for the PIN code after cycle completion, meaning that on-screen parametric release can occur, while cycle parameters are monitored on-screen with data and user ID recorded on the internal memory.
"With all traditional sterilisers you have to monitor cycle details. You have to show that the cycle has performed correctly and you have to check all the parameters at the end of the cycle to prove it reached the right temperature and held the temperature for the correct amount of time to kill the microorganisms," Owen says.
"Older sterilisers would generate a paper printout to manually check, sign off and store this information for future records. Now we can rely on digital technology to release the load. At the end of the cycle the user checks all that data on the screen to confirm it is positive."
This technology has the potential to generate significant efficiency and financial advantages. "You no longer need printers or thermal paper, which typically fades over time."
Ethernet and USB-port connectivity come standard with the B Futura, allowing cycle data to be transferred easily to a PC with no added software required. An optional Wi-Fi connection is also available, which offers the same functionality as well as allowing cycle status to be managed by a smartphone or tablet.
"That's three different ways of transferring and managing the data from the internal memory. All that data is saved in PDF format, which keeps it very simple, and of course you can print the PDF if you still want a paper copy."
Bar code printer
Optional connection capability with a bar code printer allows for sticky bar code labels to be printed with information such as: steriliser and cycle data; user identification; and pack expiry dates. This information can be scanned to patient software, again providing the advantage of less paperwork and streamlined data management.
"This add-on is another way to speed up the process by going paperless. Critical instruments must be tracked directly to the patient they're being used on. At the moment this tracking would often be achieved with a manual logbook and the user sticking that information on the pouch of the steriliser," Owen says.
"However, with the bar code printer you can print out these labels, and the bar code contains all the vital information about the sterilisation cycle and its success. By creating a link between the bar code and the practice management software, everything is recorded digitally, removing the manual side of the process and thereby speeding up the workflow."
Steriliser of choice
"The B Futura is primarily suited to dental practices, but it's also ideal for medical practices such as day surgeries, eye surgeries and small hospitals where quick turnover is important," according to Owen.
"The cycle speed of the Futura is industry-leading – 31 minutes compared to 38 minutes for another leading brand of steriliser – which is a major consideration for a busy practice. If you were to do 10 cycles a day you would save up to an hour-and-a-half, or be able to perform 3 more cycles, by using a Futura over the alternatives."
Reliability and service
Sterilisers are complicated machines, and it was once common for average sterilisers to break down. Owen says such concerns are a thing of the past, with Mocom Australia recognising that reliability and service are pivotal considerations when it comes to sterilisation.
"We are a market leader and our product is very reliable. We also offer excellent service – managing warranties and customer support from our Perth office whilst engaging multiple third-party distributors right across Australia. We specialise in sterilisation," Owen says.