Medical air, also known as compressed medical air, is a type of respiratory gas that is used in medical treatment and procedures. It is a clean and dry air supply that has been compressed to a high pressure and is free of contaminants such as oil, water, and bacteria. Medical air is used in a variety of medical applications, including breathing support for patients on mechanical ventilation, pneumatic control of medical devices, and as a source of oxygen for various medical procedures. The quality and purity of medical air are regulated by various international standards to ensure its safe and effective use in medical applications and has to be tested and verified (or certified) on a regular basis..
Due to the large volume of air that most hospitals consume, on-site production is normally the most practical and cost effective method of supply. This is accomplished by compressing ambient air with medical air compressors which have to be strictly maintained and ensure that the risk of contamination is minimised as much as possible.
Continuous monitoring of medical air quality is of critical importance in ensuring patient safety and the effectiveness of medical treatment. Here are some reasons why:
Patient health: Medical air is used to support the breathing of patients who may already be vulnerable due to illness or injury. Contaminants in the air supply can exacerbate respiratory conditions, increase the risk of infections, and compromise patient recovery.
Regulatory compliance: Medical air quality is regulated by various international standards, such as the United States Pharmacopeia (USP) and European Pharmacopeia (EP). Regular monitoring is required to ensure compliance with these standards and prevent any issues that may arise during regulatory inspections.
Equipment performance: Medical devices that rely on compressed air, such as ventilators, anesthesia machines, and surgical tools, require clean and dry air to function properly. Continuous monitoring of air quality ensures that equipment is functioning at optimal levels, reducing the risk of equipment failure and improving patient outcomes.
Cost savings: In addition to the impact on patient health, contaminated air can also damage medical equipment, leading to costly repairs and replacement. Continuous air quality monitoring can detect issues early on, reducing the risk of equipment damage and saving costs in the long run.
In summary, continuous monitoring of medical air quality with a reliable system is essential for ensuring patient safety against impure air, regulatory compliance, equipment performance, and cost savings in medical facilities.