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Microbiological sampling; SAS, settle & contact

This service can be carried out as part of a monitoring, verification or assessment service. Analysis is carried out by an outsourced independent UKAS accredited laboratory using qualified microbiologists. Methods of analysis are based on standard “blue book” methods.

Over 90% of the methods carried out are accredited. Procedures and methods are in line with ISO 17025 guidelines for all samples received. We welcome customers to audit our procedures as part of their management of suppliers and subcontractors, and a visit to the laboratory in Surrey can always be arranged.

Is Microbiological sampling required?

Yes:- to assess the microbiological surface contamination and the microbiological quality of air. In some instances such as healthcare air quality must be verified against specific guidance. Air supplied to operating theatres should be sampled microbiologically before a theatre comes into use. Levels in an empty theatre (HTM 2025) < 35 cfu/m3 (HTM 03-01) < 10 cfu/m3.

What is involved?

Airborne bacteria and fungi are measured by taking air samples with a Micro-Bio sampler using 55mm contact plates or 90mm agar plates. A pair is taken per position with each plate being selective for bacteria or fungi. Agar settle plates (90mm) may also be taken at the same or adjacent table height/wound site locations. Settle plates are open for 60-120 minutes in an unoccupied indoor environment. Surface measurement involves the contact slide or plate being depressed against the surface being assessed. Action levels used have been calculated with regard to the surface area of the plate or slide.

How often does it need to be done?

Normally as part of an annual assessment or verification. In some cases when significant system works have been undertaken, sampling would be part of the procedure for bringing back into service.

How can AirisQ help with Microbiological sampling?

Our experienced team of trained and qualified surveyors, assessors and engineers provides the on-site service and equipment to physically take samples, followed by submission for analysis to an independent UKAS accredited laboratory using qualified microbiologists.

Benefits of using AirisQ for your Microbiological sampling

  • Rapid results service provide interim counts at 24hr, 48hr with final counts at 72 and 120hrs from incubation - this enables and speeds up client decision processes.
  • Independent UKAS accredited laboratory service using qualified microbiologists with fully auditable systems.
  • Demonstrates to users that microbiological conditions are within guidance for safe and continued use of their facilities.