The decontamination of nosocomial pathogens in hospital environments is critical since these pathogens are the direct source of so-called healthcare-acquired infections in patients, visitors, and health care workers. The presence of a wide range of pathogens and biofilms, combined with the indiscriminate use of antibiotics, present infection control teams in healthcare facilities with on-going challenges in the selection of biocides and application methods. This necessitates the development of biocides and innovative decontamination methods that overcome the shortcomings of conventional decontamination methods. The use of hydrogen peroxide vapour is one such biocide that offers a superior decontamination option to conventional techniques. These insights inspired us to present a thorough review here. Motivated by these observations, herein we provide a comprehensive overview on the utilisation of hydrogen peroxide vapour as a superior decontamination alternative in hospital settings. This review finds hydrogen peroxide vapour very close to an ideal decontaminant due to its proven efficacy against a wide range of microorganisms, safe to use, lack of toxicity concerns, and good material compatibility. The superiority of hydrogen peroxide vapour was recently demonstrated in the case of decontamination of N95/FFP2 masks for reuse to address the critical shortage caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) during the Covid19 pandemic. Despite the significant number of studies demonstrating antimicrobial activity, there remains a need to critically understand the mechanism of antimicrobial action which can foster the realisation of superior approaches.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusSubmitted - 5 May 2023


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