Southern Ocean Medical Center Keeps Patients Safe with the Most Advanced Infection-Fighting Technology

September 4, 2018

The Helios® ultraviolet disinfection system uses three portable towers to emit powerful, yet safe UV-C energy that is effective against bacteria, spores, viruses, including “superbugs” after an environmental service cleaning professional has manually cleaned the area.

Hackensack Meridian Health Southern Ocean Medical Center now provides the most advanced technology to clean hospital rooms and better protect patients against potentially deadly infections.

Southern Ocean Medical Center uses the Helios® ultraviolet disinfection system from Surfacide, LLC. The system uses three portable towers to emit powerful, yet safe UV-C energy that is effective against bacteria, spores, and viruses, including “superbugs.”

“Protecting patients against infection has always been a high priority for us,” said Regina Foley, Ph.D., MBA, RN, chief operations officer of Southern Ocean Medical Center. “This technology provides an extra layer of protection for both patients and team members, which is especially important today because we need to take every step available to guard against infection from antibiotic-resistant organisms and other infectious agents.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are an estimated 722,000 such infections just in U.S. acute-care hospitals. The annual cost to treat these infections is estimated at nearly $10 billion a year. Patients who acquire an infection in a hospital also must remain in the facility for an average of 17 more days, further increasing health care costs.

In addition to using traditional cleaning methods, Southern Ocean Medical Center invested in the Surfacide UV-C technology to combat healthcare-associated infections. UV-C energy has been used for decades to kill organisms in water supplies and other applications where bacteria may be present. Now it is being used to kill organisms on hard surfaces found in hospitals including bed rails, TV remotes, patient tray tables, guest chairs, countertops, and bathrooms.

“It’s no longer enough to rely just on approaches such as antibiotics and manual disinfection,” said Linda Broderick, director of Environmental Services and Transport, Southern Ocean Medical Center. “With this industry-leading technology, we can truly say we are going the extra mile to protect both our patients, visitors and team members.”

The 10-to-30 minute process is performed by the Surfacide system in a closed room, after an environmental service cleaning professional has manually cleaned the area and wiped down surfaces. Treating the room with UV-C energy helps disinfect areas that were not completely cleaned manually.

The Helios® ultraviolet disinfection system is also used at Hackensack University Medical Center, Jersey Shore University Medical Center, Ocean Medical Center, Bayshore Medical Center, Palisades Medical Center and Raritan Bay Medical Center – Old Bridge and Perth Amboy.


Located in the heart of southern Ocean County, Hackensack Meridian Health Southern Ocean Medical Center has been caring for the community for over 40 years. With more than 400 physicians and over 1,000 dedicated health care professionals, the medical center provides comprehensive high-quality, advanced inpatient and outpatient services. Numerous investments have been made to facilities and services to bring advanced treatments, breakthrough technologies and skilled expertise to patients, including: advanced imaging services for expert screening, diagnostics and treatment, laboratory services, pain management, telemedicine for stroke patients, maternity, sleep medicine, bariatric surgery, cardiovascular services and rehabilitation, convenient outpatient locations and two urgent care centers. The Emergency Department sees more than 40,000 patients of southern Ocean County each year in a setting that reinforces comfort, privacy and compassion. The completion of the state-of-the-art Cancer Care Center provides a single destination for multidisciplinary cancer treatment and advanced radiation therapies. A committed focus to expanding physician expertise has increased the scope of advanced specialty care available close to home. The nurses and allied health providers are consistently recognized as providing high-quality, personalized care to patients and their families. Southern Ocean Medical recently received a four star rating from the Center of Medicare and Medicaid Services for overall hospital quality. The nursing team achieved Magnet® status, the nation’s highest honor of nursing excellence for nursing practice, quality and safety in patient care. Southern Ocean Medical Center is a designated primary stroke center and is designated by the ACS-MBSA QIP as the most comprehensive quality bariatric surgery program in the region.

ABOUT HACKENSACK MERIDIAN HEALTH Hackensack Meridian Health is a leading not-for-profit health care organization that is the largest, most comprehensive and truly integrated health care network in New Jersey, offering a complete range of medical services, innovative research and life-enhancing care.

Hackensack Meridian Health comprises 16 hospitals from Bergen to Ocean counties, which includes three academic medical centers – Hackensack University Medical Center in Hackensack, Jersey Shore University Medical Center in Neptune, JFK Medical Center in Edison; two children’s hospitals – Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital in Hackensack, K. Hovnanian Children’s Hospital in Neptune; nine community hospitals – Ocean Medical Center in Brick, Riverview Medical Center in Red Bank, Mountainside Medical Center in Montclair, Palisades Medical Center in North Bergen, Raritan Bay Medical Center in Perth Amboy, Southern Ocean Medical Center in Manahawkin, Bayshore Medical Center in Holmdel, Raritan Bay Medical Center in Old Bridge, and Pascack Valley Medical Center in Westwood; and two rehabilitation hospitals – JFK Johnson Rehabilitation Institute in Edison and Shore Rehabilitation Institute in Brick.

Additionally, the network has more than 450 patient care locations throughout the state which include ambulatory care centers, surgery centers, home health services, long-term care and assisted living communities, ambulance services, lifesaving air medical transportation, fitness and wellness centers, rehabilitation centers, urgent care centers and physician practice locations. Hackensack Meridian Health has 33,000 team members, and 6,500 physicians and is a distinguished leader in health care philanthropy, committed to the health and well-being of the communities it serves.

The network’s notable distinctions include having one of only five major academic medical centers in the nation to receive Healthgrades America’s 50 Best Hospitals Award for five or more consecutive years, four hospitals among the top 10 in New Jersey by U.S. News and World Report. Other honors include consistently achieving Magnet® recognition for nursing excellence from the American Nurses Credentialing Center, recipient of the John M. Eisenberg Award for Patient Safety and Quality from The Joint Commission and the National Quality Forum, a six-time recipient of Fortune’s “100 Best Companies to Work For,” one of the “20 Best Workplaces in Health Care” in the nation, and the number one “Best Place to Work for Women.” The network was also named to Becker’s Healthcare’s “150 Top Places to Work in Healthcare/2018” list.

Hackensack Meridian Health partnered with Seton Hall University to launch the first private medical school in New Jersey – Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine at Seton Hall University – in more than 50 years to address a growing shortage of physicians and dramatic changes in health care delivery. Additionally, the network partnered with Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer to find more cures for cancer faster while ensuring that patients have access to the highest quality, most individualized cancer care when and where they need it. Hackensack Meridian Health and Carrier Clinic, New Jersey’s oldest and most respected behavioral health provider, signed a definitive agreement to merge.

Hackensack Meridian Health is a member of AllSpire Health Partners, an interstate consortium of leading health systems, to focus on the sharing of best practices in clinical care and achieving efficiencies.

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