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Microbial Contamination Characteristics on Touch Surfaces in Outpatient Self-Service Facilities by Wen-Bin Wu, Ding-Yun Feng, Hai-Ling Yang, Jia-Xin Zhu, Fan-Hua Huang, Kang-Ni Feng, Yu-Qi Zhou, Tian-Tuo Zhang

Background: With the development of science and technology, self-service facilities have been widely used in hospitals. This study aimed to assess the microbial contamination characteristics on touch surfaces in outpatient, self-service facilities from Monday to Friday.
Methods: Touch surfaces in outpatient facilities were swabbed and surveyed for total microbial growth before and after work every morning. Selected bacteria were identified to screen for pathogenic organisms.
Results: There were 360 samples collected, 87 samples (24.2%) were culture-positive. Staphylococcus species were the main microbial contamination. The three most common bacteria were S. hominis, S. epidermidis and S. hemolyticus. After work, more microbial contamination was found on Monday (p = 0.029). There was no difference in sample positive rates between self-service facilities and manual service area. Although, the antibiotic resistance patterns of different staphylococcus species were different, the overall drug resistance rate is low. Only one S. aureus was methicillin-Sensitive S. aureus.
Conclusions: The self-service facilities’ touch surfaces microbial contamination were similar to manual service area, but the more used, the more microbial contamination was found. Hospitals should enhance cleaning times of self-service facilities to keep them clean, especially on Mondays.

DOI: 10.7754/Clin.Lab.2021.210225