SCRANTON, Pa., March 8, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Just in time for National Patient Safety Awareness Week, X-STATIC ® Antimicrobial Technology launched a new webinar available for CE credit: "A More Complete Approach to Infection Prevention: Bacterial Management of Soft Surfaces and Associated Reduction in HAIs." Webinar leader, Peggy Prinz Luebbert, highlights the importance of soft surface bacterial management and how to include it into a complete infection prevention protocol. The 2013 theme for National Patient Safety Week is "Patient Safety 7/365: 7 days of recognition, 365 of commitment to safe care." Great advancements have been made to-date in reducing healthcare associated infections and improving patient safety through hard surface disinfection and hand hygiene. However, soft surface fabrics such as privacy curtains, scrubs, bed linens and uniforms, are often overlooked. During the webinar, infection prevention and patient safety professionals will learn what soft surfaces are in the healthcare setting and current clinical data on contamination and transmission of bacteria via these surfaces. Also discussed are the lack of standardized protocols, limited guidelines and the ineffectiveness of laundering alone. "The first step in protecting both patients and healthcare workers from contamination of soft surfaces is raising awareness about the issue and establishing best practices and guidelines," said Karin Recchione, director of marketing for Noble Biomaterials. "We're working closely with the infection prevention community to provide the support and education they need to incorporate these into everyday practice." Soft surfaces make up 90 percent of the patient contact environment and have been shown to act as "fomites," or carry pathogenic bacteria. One study published in 2012 concluded, "Privacy curtains are rapidly contaminated with potentially pathogenic bacteria. Further studies should investigate the role of privacy curtains in pathogen transmission and provide interventions to reduce curtain contamination." The webinar is available to download here. "The evidence is clear that soft surface fabrics contribute to contamination of the healthcare environment," said Luebbert. "As infection preventionists, our goal is to work toward zero healthcare associated infections and it's time to look at the technologies associated with antimicrobial fabrics."