hospital room free of infection because of cleaning and disinfecting

Healthcare facilities ramp up cleaning in response to the rising threat of drug-resistant infections

Candida auris. It’s the latest headline-grabbing superbug that has hospitals on high alert — and for good reason: The fungus has proven resistant to multiple drugs and is both invasive and deadly.

According to news stories, Mount Sinai Hospital, in New York City went to extremes to eradicate the fungus in a patient’s room after his death. The facility brought in special cleaning equipment and had to remove floor and ceiling tiles. The patient had been admitted to the hospital for abdominal surgery.

Darrel Hicks, an infection control consultant in St. Charles, Missouri, says that the C. auris case at Mount Sinai Hospital has put the spotlight back on daily cleaning and disinfecting in healthcare facilities.

“We can’t wait until it’s a terminal cleaning to do a proper disinfection of patient rooms,” he says. “We need to refocus on daily cleaning and apply disinfectant to pre-cleaned surfaces.”

Indeed, the rise of drug-resistant infections has highlighted the importance of proper cleaning and disinfecting protocols hospital-wide — and environmental services (EVS) staff is stepping up its game.

“There’s a concern regarding antibiotic resistance, which has led to a more direct focus on comprehensive cleaning and disinfecting programs in healthcare facilities,” says Shari Solomon, president of CleanHealth Environmental LLC, Silver Spring, Maryland.

Moreover, an increasing number of EVS departments are paying closer attention to training and educating staff members — not only in proper cleaning procedures, but in understanding the importance of their role in the fight against hospital-acquired infections (HAIs).

“It’s about educating workers to appreciate why they’re so valuable,” says Solomon, “and why it’s important that they clean and disinfect areas where there’s the potential for cross-contamination.”

next page of this article:
Train Staff On Proper Cleaning And Disinfecting