Independent Clinical Study Uncovers the Serious Risk Posed by Shoe Sole Pathogen Contamination, its Link to HAI’s, and Germ-Sensitive Environments

HealthySole HSPLUS UVC Disinfection Device

In the first experiment, the HealthySole® HSPLUS reduced shoe sole decontamination more than 99% for the bacterial strains that were tested (P<.01 for="" each="" strain="">

In October 2017 the Journal of Hospital Infection published the results of an in-depth, year-long clinical research study to determine whether shoe soles are a vector for pathogen colonization, transmission, and contamination of floors in sensitive areas of hospitals, and whether the HealthySole® HSPLUS decontamination system could effectively decrease the risk of pathogen colonization and transmission emanating from floors lowering the risks of HAI’s. Several of the different strains of bacteria that were used in this study —Enterococcus, E. coli, S. aureus, C. difficile— are found to be abundantly present on the soles of shoes. Most importantly, these bacteria were proven to spread via aerosolization, direct contact, and indirect contact, which are a commonly-overlooked means of pathogenic transmission that can lead to HAIs and contamination in infection sensitive environments.

The three-phase study prepared shoe soles with different strains of microorganisms at random to UVC exposure or a lack thereof. Doctors Tasnuva Rashid, Kevin Garey, and their colleagues from the University of Houston College of Pharmacy (Houston, TX), University of Texas School of Public Health (Houston, TX), and University of Edinburgh (Edinburgh, UK) were members of the research team. Three separate sets of experiments were run to investigate the efficacy of the HealthySole® HSPLUS system to determine shoe sole decontamination and the following bacterial colonization and transmission throughout a specific hospital area. The first experiment studied UVC efficacy, the second phase marked the transfer of each bacterial strain to four different types of flooring, and the third phase mimicked human traffic in a hospital patient room to measure specific bacterial contamination. All of these experiments included blinded positive and negative controls.

In the first experiment, the HealthySole® HSPLUS reduced shoe sole decontamination more than 99% for the bacterial strains that were tested (P<.01 for each strain). The second experiment, which…

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