What is ATP Testing?

What is ATP testing, and why do we use it?

Evidence-based testing with adenosine triphosphate (ATP), the energy molecule found in all living cells, is an exact measurement of the cleanliness of a surface. After its introduction to the food industry years ago, ATP testing has become a vital infection prevention tool for environmental services teams in many healthcare facilities.

Myth: Does ATP testing measure the Colony Forming Units (CFU) on surfaces? No, ATP only measures the organic matter left behind on a surface and doesn’t measure bacteria or viruses. It is primarily a tool used to help improve cleaning methodologies.

ATP testing is conducted using a Luminometer, a device that measures ATP, and a testing swab. Once an area is cleaned, a swab of a surface is taken. Then, the swab is placed in the Luminometer to measure the ATP level. The reading on the device is measured in Relative Light Units (RLU). We use an Ensure Touch from Hygiena with Ultrasnap surface test swabs. These tools help us to measure and track changes to cleaning regimes.

The CQC (Care Quality Commission) identifies that the use of ATP testing supports cleaning regimes to maintain and improve hygiene in care settings and medical centres. Give us a call today to discuss your cleaning needs and developing better cleaning practices.