Woman's Hospital Now Using Germ-Zapping Robot

March 05, 2018

Xenex Lightstrike® robot destroys superbugs that cause infections

Every staff member at Woman’s Hospital plays a critical role in infection prevention and patient safety. But unlike her co-workers, a new hire named Wilma happens to be a germ-zapping robot.

As hospitals around the country look for new and innovative ways to battle deadly pathogens and kill multi-drug resistant organisms that can cause hospital-acquired infections, Woman’s Hospital is now using a Xenex LightStrike® Germ-Zapping Robot™ that destroys hard-to-kill bugs in hard-to-clean places. Woman’s employees voted to name the robot Wilma, an acronym for “Woman’s Infection Lessening Mobile Application.”

“Patient safety is a top priority at Woman’s Hospital,” said Johnathan Landor, director of Environmental Services. “Wilma will help us continue to maintain our already stellar infection prevention rates and provide the safest possible environment for our patients.”

The robot uses pulsed xenon ultraviolet light to quickly destroy bacteria, viruses, fungi and bacterial spores. The portable disinfection system is effective against even the most dangerous pathogens, including norovirus, influenza, Ebola and MRSA. Germicidal ultraviolet light has been used for disinfection for decades, but the robot is a new technology that uses pulsed xenon, rather than mercury bulbs. This light penetrates the cell walls of dangerous pathogens, fusing their DNA and thus rendering them unable to reproduce or mutate; this effectively kills them on surfaces.

The robot can disinfect a typical patient or procedure room in a five-minute cycle without warm-up or cool-down times. Operated by the hospital environmental services and patient care staff, it can be used in any department and in any unit, including operating rooms, general patient care rooms, contact precaution areas, bathrooms and public spaces.