Two Midwest Hospitals Are First to Test New Bacteria-Killing Light Fixtures
Indigo-Clean™ Clinical Partners Program Evaluates Performance of Break-through Technology
26 June 2015
KENOSHA, Wis. and NASHVILLE, Tenn. Two Midwestern hospitals are the first to join the Indigo-Clean™ Clinical Partners Program. The program helps healthcare facilities evaluate the performance of
Indigo-Clean™, a light fixture that uses Continuous Environmental Disinfection technology to
continuously inactivate harmful bacteria linked to hospital acquired infections (HAIs). Froedtert and the
Medical College of Wisconsin, Froedtert Hospital in Milwaukee and United Hospital System, Kenosha
Medical Center Campus are evaluating the new Indigo-Clean™ technology. Kenall made the
announcement at the annual meeting of the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and
Epidemiology (APIC) in Nashville.
Indigo-Clean™ is a specially designed light fixture that installs easily into the ceiling of any room in a hospital, clinic or health facility. Indigo-Clean™ uses light-emitting diodes (LEDs) with a wavelength
output of 405 nanometers (nm) to continuously inactivate a wide range of harmful bacteria that are
known causes of HAIs, including MRSA (Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus), C. difficile and VRE
(Vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus). While the light is lethal to bacteria, it complies with all
internationally recognized standards for patient safety.
Both hospitals began working with Kenall earlier this year to demonstrate the effectiveness of Indigo-
The technology used in Indigo-Clean™ was discovered in 2002 by researchers at Scotland’s University of
Strathclyde. It has been clinically proven to reduce harmful bacteria up to 70 percent beyond routine
disinfection efforts. It has been the subject of more than 20 peer-reviewed journals and 30 conference
presentations. The technology has been used since 2008 to reduce bacteria linked to hospital-acquired
infections at the Glasgow Royal Infirmary, a major teaching hospital in the U.K.
The University was granted the U.S. patent on the technology last year and recently selected Kenall as
the exclusive, perpetual licensee to commercialize it for the North American healthcare market.
“Kenall understands the need for U.S. hospitals to replicate the U.K.’s success. That’s why we have
introduced this first-of-its-kind program to provide evaluation opportunities, with clinical support direct
from the manufacturer, through our Clinical Partners Program,” said Cliff Yahnke, Ph.D., Kenall’s
Director of Clinical Affairs, who leads the company’s Clinical Partners Program. “Our goal is to give
providers confidence that Indigo-Clean™ is an innovative, effective and practical solution to an age-old
Froedtert, a 655-bed teaching hospital that is the primary teaching affiliate of the Medical College of Wisconsin, is the first hospital to participate in the program. Froedtert is a Level I trauma center and is part of a three-hospital, 16-clinic network. Kenosha Medical Center Campus, a 247-bed hospital 65 miles north of Chicago and part of United Hospital System, is the second participating hospital. United Hospital System is a comprehensive regional healthcare system that has served southeastern Wisconsin and northern Illinois communities for more than 100 years. United Hospital System provides services primarily through Kenosha Medical Center Campus and the Saint Catherine’s Medical Center Campus and several other clinic locations.
Froedtert Hospital began testing Indigo-Clean™ fixtures in the Gastroenterology (GI) Endoscope Clinic’s waiting room earlier this year. Initial results of more than 1,000 samples collected during a four-week period showed a 40 percent continuous bacterial reduction while the Indigo-Clean™ fixture was configured in a blended solution combining 405nm and standard LEDs to create the look of white overhead lighting while providing the continuous bacteria-killing benefit of the light.
“The initial results suggest even higher levels of bacterial reduction could be obtained with a configuration optimized for the area taking into account its size and patient traffic,” said Nathan Ledeboer, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Pathology at the Medical College of Wisconsin. “We are beginning a second evaluation to understand the potential impact of an optimized configuration upon the bacteria levels in medically relevant spaces within our institution.”
Evaluations at Kenosha Medical Center are just getting underway. They involve two identical patient rooms using different configurations of Indigo-Clean™. One room will be equipped with two blended light fixtures spaced across the room, and the other room will be equipped with an indigo-only 405nm fixture in the center of the room.
“Hospital Acquired Infections have increased the cost of health care, so finding effective methods to safely inactivate the organisms that cause these infections is very important,” said Tom Duncan, Vice President and COO of United Hospital System. “We are very interested in documenting how Indigo-Clean™ can improve the hospital environment and benefit patient health outcomes.”
Yahnke added, while current methods of disinfecting the healthcare environment are effective, the methods are episodic and results are short-lived as bacteria immediately re-populate the space. The ability of Indigo-Clean™ to continuously treat hard and soft surfaces and the air can provide a significant boost to any healthcare facility's cleaning and disinfecting efforts. Unlike high-tech systems that clean only when they are activated by a trained operator, Indigo-Clean™ is automatic and continuous.
“Hospitals present a very challenging environment for infection control because they provide around-the-clock care, often require quick room turnover, and serve already-compromised patients,” said Yahnke.
The Indigo-Clean™ Clinical Partners Program is open to interested healthcare facilities. For additional information, visit www.Indigo-Clean.com, Facebook or Twitter or call (800) 4-KENALL.
About Indigo-Clean™ and Kenall
Indigo-Clean is an affiliate of Kenall Manufacturing, which has earned a reputation for superior quality, innovation, sustainability and exceptional value in the lighting industry since its inception in 1963. Kenall introduced the first impact and vandal-resistant lighting products to specialized lighting for the most challenging environments for healthcare, food processing transportation and security purposes. Kenall’s extensive research has led to award-winning intelligent solutions using the latest LED and lighting controls technologies. Kenall products are designed and manufactured in a state-of-the-art facility in Kenosha, Wis. that includes a certified UL Test Lab and a full circuit board design, testing and assembly facility. Kenall products meet the guidelines established under the Buy American Act and the North American Free Trade Agreement. For additional information, visit www.kenall.com.