A pandemic illness event, particularly influenza, poses a cleaning challenge for college and university campuses, where students and staff are in close contact with each other in student housing, classrooms and other gathering places such as student unions. The Department of Health And Human Services and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have developed a checklist to help schools with pandemic planning. It includes four steps: planning and coordination; continuity of student learning and operations; infection control policies and procedures; and communications planning.

Janitorial departments need to pay special attention to infection control policies and procedures, which include encouraging good hand hygiene and the flu vaccine; the procurement, storage and use of supplies such as soap, alcohol-based sanitizers, tissues and waste receptacles; and a specific plan for campus healthcare facilities such as clinics.