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Posts: 18
Registered: ‎02-11-2017

Media for environmental monitoring?

Hi, reposting this because I would appreciate some guidance and input.


I'm looking to change the media that we use for gloved fingertip, surface, and air sampling. We do in-house air (passive) sampling, surface sampling, and gloved fingertips on a weekly basis as part of our QC procedure. 


In the past, we've used EnviroTest ET1000 media paddles from QI Med for all three. I don't believe that these paddles are appropriate to use for passive air sampling - the manufacturer's guidelines only indicate how to use them for air sampling via impaction. I know that 797 doesn't recommend use of settling plates, but our PIC would like to continue using them as NJ BOP was impressed that we do in-house air sampling, even if it's only passive. 


The questions I have are these: 

  • If I'm interpreting 797 correctly, it distinguishes between monitoring for bacteria (TSA+ for 72 hours) and fungus (SAD for 7 days) in terms of air sampling. I would assume that we would then need two different types of settling plates - one TSA and one SAD? 
  • For surface sampling, 797 only discusses using contact plates with agar growth medium + neutralizing agents, like TSA+. Is it appropritate to only use the TSA+ plates for surface sampling to be more cost effective? 
  • Technical data sheets from Millipore seem to distinguish between media used as settling plates/fingertips, and media used for surface sampling. Do we need two separate types for settling/fingertips vs. surface? 

I was looking at plates from Millipore, but would appreciate any other suggestions/vendors. 


Thanks in advance for any thoughts you may have,


Occasional Contributor
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎03-13-2017

Re: Media for environmental monitoring?



At our facility, we use Hardy Diagnostics #p34 plates for our EM. This is for active air sampling using an air sampler, surface, and fingertips. We use to use the finger paddles for gloved finger tip but it is more costly than the p34 plates. I don't believe there is a requirement for separate types of media for settling/surface/finger as long as the media is able to grow colonies.


If you are planning on testing for fungus then you do need two different types, TSA and SAD/MEA.


Hope this helps. Thanks