Effect of disinfectants with active chlorine

Infections with the bacterial species Enterococcus faecium are a growing problem in the hospital environment. Researchers have investigated whether the species have become resistant to disinfectants with chlorine

Enterococcus faecium (VREfm) is a growing problem in Danish hospitals. As VREfm is controlled with chlorine-releasing disinfectants, the study investigated whether VREfm has developed increased tolerance to these agents.

A total of 59 different isolates of VREfm were tested for their tolerance to chlorine-releasing biocides, in particular sodium dichlororisocyanurate (NaDCC) and sodium hypochlorite (NaOCl).

Contact time and concentration must be observed
The study showed that VREfm strains have a high survival rate in the hospital environment. They can withstand rather high concentrations of chlorine-releasing disinfectants and they can survive prolonged dehydration on cleaned surfaces.

On the other hand, the results also proved that chlorine-releasing disinfectants are effective when recommendations for contact time as well as the amount and concentration of disinfectants are strictly adhered to. This also applied to pre-impregnated active chlorine wipes included in the study.

The study was carried out by researchers from the University of Copenhagen. A brief summary in English is available in the report Enterokokkers følsomhed overfor klorfrigivende biocider (page 9-10).

Find out more about the use of active chlorine in disinfectants from:

Michael Fink
Tel +45 4516 9156