Mackwell Health Partners with Whitebox to Create Sustainable Decontamination Solutions for Re-Usable Healthcare PPENews
Posted by: The Probe 22nd July 2021
Mackwell Health, part of the Mackwell Group, has today announced that it has partnered with Whitebox, a Swedish-based provider of innovative surface and air disinfection solutions, to develop state of the art UV-C disinfection chambers for the healthcare industry. Available now, the Mackwell Health Whitebox is designed to quickly and reliably disinfect personal protective equipment (PPE) in compliance with healthcare regulations and guidelines.
Estimates show the NHS and social care segments spent roughly £500 million on disposable respiratory PPE in 2020. 60% of that cost was spent on higher performance tight fitting FFP grade respirators, with the remainder being disposable Type IIR loose fitting surgical masks. However, FFP respirators only accounted for 5% of the total volume of this PPE. With health staff and trade associations continuing to lobby for improvements in worker protection by increasing the usage of FFP respirators, the resulting uplift in volume would create a significantly increased cost burden for disposable masks and respirators.
Disposable PPE also creates a major environmental challenge, with each item containing significant amounts of single-use non-recyclable plastic materials. Reusable respirators and masks offer the potential to address both environmental and economic challenges. With the healthcare segment having expressed concerns over the ability to effectively decontaminate items between use, this partnership between Mackwell Health and Whitebox provides the opportunity to address those concerns and introduce a reliable and more sustainable solution.
Promoting a sustainable and economic approach to respiratory PPE, the Mackwell Health Whitebox can also be programmed to disinfect items used more broadly across the healthcare industry. For example, optometrists – who need to disinfect lenses and spectacle frames – or dentists – who rely on sterile dental implements with every patient – can leverage the Mackwell Health Whitebox for a sustainable solution to disinfection. Programmes have already been created to disinfect reusable respirators, as well as systems such as Mackwell Health’s own ProtectivAIR® UV-powered respirator system.
Backed by government laboratory evidence, scientific models can be created for specific items of medical equipment, which allows the programming of automated treatment cycles, tailored to the object to be treated, to achieve a targeted level of disinfection. Through the Mackwell Health Whitebox, 4 log (99.99%) disinfection for reusable PPE can be achieved using cycles of between 30 seconds and 1 minute – depending on the item.
Available in Mini, Micro and Wheelchair-sized boxes, the Mackwell Health Whitebox provides a practical solution for health staff, NHS Trusts, primary care organisations and other stakeholders in the Health and social care sector. Portable, convenient and user friendly, boxes can fit wherever required, from benches to desktops.
Andy Davies, Commercial Director at Mackwell Health, said: “Our partnership with Whitebox provides a unique solution that can greatly enhance the quality and availability of reusable PPE. Protective equipment is indispensable to the healthcare industry, but until now it has also proven costly and wasteful. Without solutions such as this, the situation will only get worse as more due diligence is rightly paid to protecting the workforce effectively.
“The Mackwell Health Whitebox creates a sustainable approach to PPE, promoting a circular economy model that benefits the environment, increases the volume of quality equipment for health staff, and improves cost efficiency. We are proud to be partnering with such a forward thinking and innovative organisation as Whitebox, delivering its solution to make a positive impact within healthcare.”
Erik Wikström, Managing Director and CEO of Whitebox, said: “We are excited to be entering the UK market by partnering with Mackwell Health, a like-minded company that has a similar vision to ours around infection control. Whitebox is determined to deliver a sustainable and reliable solution that helps to keep people safe, and this is only the beginning of a strong and innovative relationship that can make a real difference to healthcare.”