How can you minimize the cost of ENT endoscopes?

Read the original research article here

Flexible channel-less ENT endoscopes are essential instruments in an Otolaryngology practice because of patients that require an ENT exam in the clinic. Hence, most ENT clinics typically spend time and cost reprocessing ENT endoscopes using chemical disinfectants.

In ENT clinics with a large number of patients, the cost of disinfection can be a financial burden for ENT physicians. This article discusses a study published in the journal Otolaryngology, head, and Neck surgery on cost analysis of disinfection methods for ENT endoscopes.

Hoe kun je de kosten van KNO-endoscopen minimaliseren?

Study Methods

The researchers performed a cost-minimization analysis on four ENT endoscope reprocessing and high-level decontamination methods:

-Orthophthaldehyde solution
-Accelerated hydrogen peroxide solution
-Chlorine dioxide wipe
-UV Smart D60

The researchers recommended the disinfection protocol for each method according to the manufacturer's guidelines.

Disinfection using UV technology, the ENT endoscope was manually pre-cleaned with a damp cloth (containing water) for 20s and then exposed to UV-C light for 60s.

The researcher used a time-driven, activity-based micro-costing approach that took into account disinfection costs, personnel requirements and capital depreciation. The primary outcome measure was the annual reprocessing cost for each method.

The scientists collected cost data from manufacturers, while time costs were derived from manufacturers' disinfection protocols and the Ontario Medical Association's (OMA) guide to uninsured services.

The researchers sent survey questions based on cost information and other relevant data, including the use of ENT endoscopes in general practice. The survey included 14 questions related to clinic size, ENT endoscope volume, scope disinfection method and maintenance.

They sent the surveys by e-mail to 42 otolaryngologists registered with the Canadian Society of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery.

The researchers used the responses to calculate average disinfection volumes per physician for the financial model. They also analyzed respondents' self-reported compliance with manufacturer disinfection recommendations.

Results of the study

EOne disinfection cycle refers to the disinfection of a scope after use on a patient. The researchers included the labor costs incurred by the physician or medical staff to actively participate in the disinfection procedures, such as wiping, transferring and rinsing the scopes.

The following is the breakdown of disinfection costs per cycle:‍

Orthophthaldhyde solution
Doctor treatment: $38.59
Processing clinical staff: $5.51

Accelerated hydrogen peroxide solution
Doctor treatment: $26.47
Processing clinical staff: $4.42

Chlorine dioxide wipe
Physician processing: $30.53
Processing clinical staff: $11.23

UV Smart D60
Physician processing: $22.74
Processing clinical staff: $21

Disinfection with UV Smart D60 had the lowest labor costs and the shortest scope downtime because no enzyme bath or soaking with a water disinfectant is required.

The annual cost per reprocessing for each method is as follows:

  • UV Smart D60: $58,942.08
  • Orthophthaldehyde solution: $68,610.24
  • Accelerated hydrogen peroxide solution: $79,133.76
  • Chlorine dioxide cloth: $100,025


The study found that UV technology-based disinfection of ENT endoscopes was the most cost-effective disinfection method in a large-scale ENT practice (with 2592 reprocessings per year or more).

Disinfection via the UV Smart D60 is a productive and efficient method for disinfecting medical devices. The UV-based technology also minimizes the cost of disinfecting ENT endoscopes in high-volume ENT clinics (from 2592 reprocessings per year).

Interested in how much you can save with the D60 in your healthcare facility? Feel free to contact us by requesting a demonstration or talk to one of our experts by clicking here.

Nicolas Cediey
Digital Marketer