The central sterile services department (CSSD), also called
sterile processing department (SPD), sterile processing, central
supply department (CSD), or central supply, is an integrated
place in hospitals and other health care facilities that
performs sterilization and other actions on medical devices,
equipment and consumables; for subsequent use by health workers
in the operating theatre of the hospital and also for other
aseptic procedures, eg. catheterization, wound stitching and
bandaging in a medical, surgical, maternity or pediatric ward.
The operations usually consist of cleaning of previously used
devices, like stainless steel tools, with a sterilizing liquid.
After drying the device on a stand (not by hand or cloth) it
gets wrapped in a specialized paper bag (called an aseptor bag),
tape-sealed and then sterilized by gas or in a steam autoclave,
according to the prescripts in place at the facility.
An expiry date gets written on the wrapped equipment or
consumable, before being supplied to the end-user as a sterile
product. If along the supply route, the sealed package got
damaged or opened by a health worker, it needs to be returned to
the CSSD for re-sterilization.