The number of hospitals over the world which entrust antimicrobial copper, to encounter nosocomial bacteria, is being increased. Tokuda hospital in Sofia, Bulgaria (a hospital with more than 1000 beds) has installed surfaces and antimicrobial copper items in an ICU (Intensive Care Unit). The aim was to use antimicrobial copper’s properties, in order to eliminate the number of bacteria that exist in multi-touch surfaces – such as knobs, door handles, drip stands, bed rails, trolley tables etc – which would result to severe infections of patients.
Tokuda hospital in Sofia, Bulgaria, a member of a Japanese hospital chain all over the world, is a well known, innovative hospital with contemporary units and perfectly trained personnel, offering modern operation techniques, with high standard treatment and care. The hospital is the center of medical and research activities in Bulgaria, comprising the ultimate standard for all country hospitals. This was one of the reasons that Mr. Nikos Vergopoulos, General Director of the Hellenic Copper Development Institute (HDCI), considered its copper plating a unique challenge. The whole project was financed by the European Copper Institute. (ECI).
After finishing copper plating of the Intensive Care Unit specific ward, laboratory tests followed, by taking microbial samples from copper surfaces. The results showed that, compared to the samples taken before copper plating, there is a decrease of microbial flora, proving antimicrobial copper’s unique characteristics in eliminating microbial load on its surfaces.
Dr. Panos Efstathiou, scientific consultant of H.C.D.I. in health issues, along with H.C.D.I.’s scientific team and Mr. Simeonof’s team, are in charge of the research that started in the hospital in May 2012. They are both optimistic about the upcoming results and the infections’ decrease, as there are similar installations all over Greece and abroad, for example in the U.K. and U.S.A., which confirm that copper surfaces can reduce microbes’ load in a percentage larger than 90%.
Mr. Nikos Vergopoulos, H.C.D.I.’s General Manager stated: “Copper installation at Tokuda hospital in Sofia, Bulgaria, was the development of the update we realized a year ago to the hospital’s management, who was convinced for antimicrobial copper’s effectiveness and gave the green light for copper plating installation to various surfaces and for the beginning of a scientific research. We are glad for the immediate response and we are certain that, other health units in Bulgaria would like to take advantage of copper’s antimicrobial properties, in order to secure their patients’ protection”.
Copper products used at Tokuda hospital are under antimicrobial copper CU+ mark, manufactured by Sonicocompany in Bulgaria which was certified by H.C.D.I., as a company that produces antimicrobial copper products and that is allowed to use the antimicrobial copper mark at its products which come from the specific antimicrobial copper alloy (Cu+).Sonico, besides the production of antimicrobial copper products under the mark Cu+, was also responsible for the installation of antimicrobial copper items in Tokuda hospital.