PA 15-11—sHB 5913

Public Health Committee

AN ACT CONCERNING PERSONS WHO DECONTAMINATE REUSABLE MEDICAL INSTRUMENTS OR DEVICES

SUMMARY: This act generally requires anyone who practices as a central service technician (CST) to be certified. It exempts from this requirement individuals who were employed or contracted for services as a CST in a health care facility before January 1, 2016, thus allowing them to continue practicing without certification. It also allows certain health-related professionals, students, and interns to perform CST tasks or functions without certification.

Under the act, a CST is someone who decontaminates, inspects, assembles, packages, and sterilizes reusable medical instruments or devices in a health care facility whether employed by the facility or as a contractor. A health care facility means an outpatient surgical facility or a hospital other than a chronic disease hospital.

In addition, the act requires:

1. CSTs, as well as individuals who have been deemed competent to perform CST functions, to take 10 hours of continuing education annually and

2. health care facilities that employ or contract CSTs to (a) upon a CST's written request, verify in writing a CST's employment dates or the contract period he or she provided health care services and (b) submit documentation to the Department of Public Health, upon the department's request (including during an inspection), demonstrating a CST is in compliance with the act's requirements.

The act does not set penalties for CSTs or facilities that violate its provisions.

EFFECTIVE DATE: January 1, 2016

CERTIFICATION REQUIREMENTS

Subject to certain exceptions, the act prohibits individuals from practicing as CSTs unless they:

1. pass a nationally accredited central service exam for CSTs and maintain a credential as a certified (a) registered CST, administered by the International Association of Healthcare Central Service Materiel Management (IAHCSMM) or (b) sterile processing and distribution technician, administered by the Certification Board for Sterile Processing and Distribution, Inc. (CBSPD);

2. obtain a IAHCSMM or CBSPD credential within two years after being hired or contracted for services; or

3. were employed or contracted for services as a CST in a health care facility before January 1, 2016.

Exceptions

The act allows the following people to perform CST tasks or functions without certification:

1. licensed health care providers;

2. students or interns performing CST functions under a health care provider's direct supervision as part of their training or internship; or

3. those who do not work in a health care facility's central service department, but who (a) have been specially trained and determined competent to decontaminate or sterilize reusable medical equipment, instruments, or devices meeting applicable manufacturer's instructions and standards based on the health care facility's infection prevention or control committee standards and (b) act in consultation with a certified CST.

The act requires health care facilities to retain a list of these individuals, including their job titles.

Under the act, a “central service department” is the health care facility department that processes, issues, and controls medical supplies, devices, and equipment for patient care.

CONTINUING EDUCATION

The act requires a CST to complete at least 10 hours of continuing education annually in areas related to CST functions. A non-CST deemed competent to perform CST functions must complete at least 10 hours of continuing education annually in areas related to infection control and the decontamination and sterilization of reusable medical equipment, instruments, and devices.

OLR Tracking: DC: KS: PF: cmg