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EPA Proposes Ethylene Oxide Crackdown and Expands Market for Air-Filtration Solutions
EPA Proposes Ethylene Oxide Crackdown and Expands Market for Air-Filtration Solutions

EPA Proposes Ethylene Oxide Crackdown and Expands Market for Air-Filtration Solutions

  • 27-Apr-2023 2:53 PM
  • Journalist: Harold Finch

US: Each year, around 20 billion medical devices rely on Ethylene Oxide for sterilization purposes. However, if regulations prohibit its usage, a considerable market gap may arise. This void could be addressed by alternative decontamination techniques.

Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) proposed restrictions aimed at limiting exposure to Ethylene Oxide (EtO). EtO is currently used to sterilize nearly 20 billion medical devices annually, and the proposed limitations could potentially create a substantial market opportunity for alternative sterilization methods.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has put forth a proposal to reduce Ethylene Oxide (EtO) emissions by 80% by enforcing stricter air emissions standards at 86 commercial sterilizer sites in the US. EtO is known to increase the risk of cancer, and the EPA's analysis indicates the likelihood of developing cancer to be as high as 1 in 36 to 1 in 10 for those who handle the chemical.

EtO, a chemical disinfectant widely used in the medical industry, offers a unique advantage over other sterilization methods as it can be used on medical products such as catheters, pharmaceutical ingredients, and personal protective equipment that may be susceptible to damage or degradation from other high-temperature or steam sterilization techniques.

It is estimated that around 50% of medical supplies rely on EtO sterilization, making it essential for both established and new partners in the healthcare industry to ensure a successful transition to lower EtO emissions. With no carcinogenic risks to site workers and those living close by.

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