Inside CCU - Glasswash and Media Preparation Platform
In an institution that brings together research and clinical practice, we spoke with Maria Vito, director of one of the platforms that is truly transversal to these two components.
The Glasswash and Media Preparation Platform is one of the areas of the Champalimaud Clinical Centre that truly overlaps between the Research and Clinical Services. It is a Platform that operates very much behind the scenes, but it is absolutely integral to the effective functioning of both fields.
It is much more complicated than washing the equipment, as the materials used require specialist tools, knowledge of chemicals and constant observance of the very best in laboratory practices. The Platform also prepares solutions, reagents and cultures for both researchers and clinicians.
Maria Vito is head of the Glasswash and Media Preparation Platform, and she talked to us about how and why this Platform is involved in a lot more than meets the eye.
Can you tell us a little about the work done in the Glass Wash and Media Preparation Platform, and about the people who make up your team? I have been with the ‘Glass Wash and Media Preparation Platform’ since its beginning. Like all the platforms here, it was a challenge created from scratch. A year later, Patrick Teca (Platform Technician) arrived and the following year two interns joined us, from a professional course of laboratory technicians, who became part of the team at the end of their internships (Maria Madalena Seixas and Soraia Rodrigues, Platform Technicians).
How important is education and training within the Platform?
Training plays a hugely important role for me, in the sense that it improves and acknowledges the importance of what happens ‘behind’ science. And it’s my view that schools are the best vehicle for this purpose; allowing students to contact directly with both the scientific and the working reality. From our point of view, In the last two years we have accomplished a lot, including essential training in Clinical Sterilisation to create "the Reprocessing of Medical Devices for Multiple Use Service (RMDMUS)".
In an institution that is relatively unusual in bringing together the fields of research and clinical practice, how do you manage the different dynamics and needs of both?
Given the need for a Sterilisation Service within the Clinical area to make better use of resources, this platform was created from the current Sterilisation Service, or RMDMUS.
As the Glass Wash and Media Preparation Platform does exactly the same Sterilisation procedures in the area of Research, this overlapping makes sense.
A space was created for the exclusive and specific use of the Clinical Sterilisation, and rules and norms inherent to the Clinical Sector were implemented.
The collaboration of nurses, doctors and assistants was essential in building the autonomous service that exists today.
What is innovative in our platform is the fact that all the material provided is put to common use. We provide (or we try to) everything for the researchers and the platforms. Making ourselves available and communicating effectively is essential.
What are the objectives looking to the future for the Glasswash and Media Preparation Platform?
Our ambition for the future is to improve and implement new techniques, and to ensure that both of these work properly. And preferably that you don’t hear about us at all... that is the sign that everything is going well!