SUPPORT SERVICE » CSSD (Central Sterile Supply Department)

The central sterile services department (CSSD) is an integrated place in hospital that performs sterilization and other actions on medical devices, equipment and consumables for subsequent use by health workers in the operating theatre of the hospital and also for other aseptic procedures, e.g. Catheterization, wound stitching and bandaging in a medical, surgical, maternity or pediatric ward.

The operations usually consist of cleaning of previously used devices, like stainless steel tools, with a sterilizing liquid. After drying the device on a stand (not by hand or cloth) it gets wrapped in a specialized paper bag (called an aseptor bag), tape-sealed and then sterilized by gas or in a steam autoclave, according to the prescripts in place at the facility.

An expiry date gets written on the wrapped equipment or consumable, before being supplied to the end-user as a sterile product. If along the supply route, the sealed package got damaged or opened by a health worker, it needs to be returned to the CSSD for re-sterilization.

A sterile processing technician is someone who cleans and sterilizes used surgical instruments and other [medical supplies] so that they can be safely redistributed and reused on additional patients. This work is usually centralized in a special department of the medical facility.

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