Germ-zapping robots join Citrus hospital’s cleaning crew

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CRYSTAL RIVER — A Citrus County hospital is using robots to take cleaning to a whole new level.

Seven Rivers Regional Medical Center has added high-tech “employees” to their cleaning crew to fight dangerous bacteria and germs.

Among the new additions to the cleaning crew is a germ-zapping robot named Bella. Bella is a Xenex Environmental Disinfectant XE robot and Joanie Pochis is glad to have it on board.

“Not just another tool, but a special tool,” she said.

Bella needs some help getting around but once in place, look out. The robot is an expert germ killer. When it does its thing, humans can’t be in the room.

“She basically pulsates a UV light that will destroy any of the bacteria, fungus, viruses,” Pochis said. “Shakes up the DNA so it can’t replicate.”

Bella has an onboard computer to communicate. Bella has a partner, Haiden, and the hospital uses them to help disinfect surgical suites and isolation rooms.

Crews still do their regular cleaning, and then once they are done, the robots come in and take care of the rest.

“It will penetrate any of the cracks and crevices that we can’t get during our standard cleaning,” said Michael James, who works with Bella.

Seven Rivers is one of just a few hospitals in the state to have the robots.

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Credit xenexadmin