The Covid-19 global pandemic of 2020 has brought into sharp focus the critical role that the medical device supply chain plays in the terms of bringing safe, effective healthcare to the world’s population. A key part of this supply chain is the sterilization of these devices, historically accomplished primarily through the use of ethylene oxide and gamma irradiation, using Cobalt-60. This whitepaper “Gamma: The heart of radiation sterilization past, present and future” was written by our sister business, Nordion, a leading global provider of Cobalt-60. It provides a brief overview of the importance and contribution of gamma irradiation as a sterilization modality, with a focus on why it has grown to hold a significant position in the 50 years it has been in use. It will also provide clarity on the current and future state of Cobalt-60 supply, and demonstrate to stakeholders that there is no compelling reason to consider switching from a modality that continues to deliver efficacy, reliability and cost effectiveness.
Key take-aways include:
- Global supply chain for Cobalt-60 is diverse and robust
- Recent global supply issues mitigated by Nordion
- Investments in new sources of supply continue
- Gamma continues to be the heart of radiation sterilization