Clean and disinfect tools
Wait for the tools to dry, and then use sterilized tongs to
move the tools from the steamer into a sterilized container,
and seal the container.
Steaming uses less water than boiling, and tools that are
steamed do not get dull or broken as quickly as tools that
A method from the Philippines
The Medical Mission Sisters in the Philippines have
developed a method to sterilize tools with steam:
1. Put your clean tools into a metal tray.
2. Place the tray in a cooking pan.
3. Fill the pan with
water until it
reaches halfway up the tray.
4. Cover the pan with 8 layers of clean
green banana leaves. Bind the leaves tightly
in place with strips of banana leaf or bark.
Be careful not to spill water into the tray
when you do this.
5. Put the pan on a low fire and boil for
about 1 hour.
6. Throw away the top layer of the leaves.
You can use one of the inner layers to
put your instruments on.
Some people use chemicals to sterilize metal,
rubber, or plastic tools and equipment. We do
not recommend using chemicals to sterilize.
Most chemicals used to sterilize are poisonous.
They poison the ground and the water when they
are thrown away. They are poisonous to the
people who work in factories making them, and
they are poisonous to the people who use them to clean tools.
But some tools can only be sterilized with chemicals.
Thermometers and some kinds of gloves cannot be baked, boiled, or steamed.
A Book for Midwives (2010)