The clean team: Behind the scenes of our state-of-the-art Sterile Processing department

Sterile processing upgrades

The St. Peter's Sterile Processing department recently underwent a $3.5 million renovation.

June 15, 2021

The St. Peter’s Sterile Processing team is oftenSterile processing 4 referred to as the “heart of the hospital.” The 11-member team is in charge of cleaning, sterilizing and distributing every medical instrument and piece of equipment used across the health care system.

The team is busier than ever supporting our growing surgical department, including a robotic surgery program that has completed more than 460 robotic surgeries since it launched in July 2019.

With the recent $3.5 million renovation, St. Peter’s now has one of the region’s most advanced surgical and sterile processing facilities. Upgrades included ultrasonic instrument washers, pass thru dryers, electronic self-leveling ergonomic smart sinks, large autoclaves and embedded electronic records.

Up to 80,000 pieces are currently processed each month, but the renovated space is now equipped to process almost five times that.  

“Our newly renovated department has the ability to process up to 400,000 instruments a month to support our six state-of-the-art surgical suites,” said Director of Sterile Processing James “Bill” Treharn. “It’s exciting to have a sterile processing department in a small community like Helena that rivals equipment available in a large city.”

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