This Sunday, in the Detroit Free Press' outdoors portion of the sports section, I read an alarming article that has a direct impact on all of us: "Hunters must change approach, help stall CWD from spreading to humans". It is explained in the article that, "There's increasing concern CWD, a prion disease similar to mad cow, eventually could cross the species barrier and spread to humans. Many scientists think it's not a matter of if, but a matter of when. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warns not to eat the meat of contaminated deer." WOW! Now I am not a hunter. My father was, and I have friends who are hunters. It is major for us in our industry to make sure medical devices are clean and functional, so they can be high level disinfected or sterilized before they can be used again. I had no idea of this possible major concern with our deer population and its impact on all of us. I quote from the article: "In 2002, the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel identified two Minnesota men who developed Creutzfeldt-Jakob, the human mad cow variant, after years of eating wild game from CWD-contaminated regions. The medical community can't prove it's related, but the odds of two friends getting it randomly are astronomically slim. A third friend was said to have died of Pick's disease, a more common brain disorder, though it's possible his diagnosis was an error." Our patients are eating deer meat. How do we know who, of those that walk into our facility, has eaten deer meat and whether it was safe for them to eat? When I read this article, my mind started connecting the dots. There's a popular slogan, "what's in your wallet?" Maybe our industry slogan should be, "what are you testing your cleaning equipment with?" It only makes sense, with the changes in standards of testing our cleaning equipment, to make sure they are working properly and that you look at what you are testing them with. After reading this article now more than ever we as a profession and an industry must start adapting quality systems in what we do and use quality products that are based on science.


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