The contamination of high touch surfaces is culpable for the transmission of pathogens in all sorts of places, but its impact is something those visiting, staying, or working in healthcare centers are hyperaware of. With so many individuals with low to no immunity in one place, thorough cleaning and sanitization is of the utmost importance.
Thankfully, health care-associated infections are decreasing overall, but the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that approximately 1 in 31 hospital patients have at least one health care-associated infection.
Professional commercial cleaning and janitorial services play a decisive role in stopping the proliferation of infection. Cleaning differs from disinfecting and sanitizing, in that cleaning is the process of removing dust, dirt, and some of the germs on a given surface. Disinfecting and sanitizing targets bacteria so that it is difficult for viruses to survive or multiply and spread infection.
Knowing where to focus cleaning and disinfection efforts is key. Below we’re discussing six high touch surfaces in healthcare centers according to the CDC and how to proactively eradicate harmful pathogens.
1. Bed Rails and Bed Frames
First up is one of the most difficult to clean items in a patient’s room – and naturally it also happens to be one of the most frequently touched surfaces in both general patient and intensive care unit patient rooms.
Cleaning a patient room full of medical equipment can be daunting, but beds and bed rails must be disinfected. Let the surface be saturated in the cleaning solution for the correct amount of time before using rags to clean every nook and cranny. Proceed from high to low, cleaning bed rails before bed legs and so on.
2. Door Handles and Light Switches
Door handles and light switches are a breeding ground for germs and bacteria anywhere, but especially risky in healthcare centers.
Use a fast-acting disinfectant to clean door handles in healthcare facilities, as disinfecting requires the surface to be wet for a specific timeframe. The surface must remain wet for the designated amount of time in order to be effectively disinfected. After spraying the disinfectant until the door handle is wet and allowing that to set for the correct time (often two minutes), wipe it down with a clean cloth.
Healthcare center counters are high touchpoints that need to be cleaned with the appropriate chemicals. A broad-spectrum disinfectant is needed to successfully disinfect counters from specific germs and viruses.
Office cleaning subcontractors need to find out what material each counter is made of and use the solution that works best for each type. Once again, allowing the correct dwell time is imperative. Part of offering quality commercial cleaning and janitorial services is ensuring that every cleaner on the team knows the proper method and best cleaning practices for each part of the facility.
4. IV Poles
To help mitigate pathogenic spread, healthcare center cleaning subcontractors must think outside the typical office cleaning procedures and consider all the many items used in a healthcare setting.
IV poles are an easy to overlook high touch surface in healthcare centers. IV poles need to be gently wiped with a soft, clean cloth that has been dampened with water and a mild non-abrasive household cleaner or hospital grade disinfectant. The IV pole should then be rinsed with a water-dampened cloth, and then thoroughly dried with a soft cloth.
5. Blood Pressure Cuffs
The blood pressure cuffs in healthcare centers present an interesting and important task when it comes to cleaning. First ensure the cuff is free of surface dirt or grease. Next, undergo the proper disinfecting process according to the style of cuff you’re dealing with – the specific instructions will vary depending on the type and brand.
While most of the documentation in health care centers has transitioned to digitization, paper still holds its place – and often with the help of a clipboard. Clipboards and paper charts are touched again and again by a rotation of people in a healthcare center throughout the day.
Facilities without a policy in place for those who are responsible for cleaning and disinfecting clipboards need one. Office cleaning subcontractors can select the best EPA-registered disinfectants to keep the clipboards in a healthcare center as clean and germ-free as possible, without compromising the quality of the plastic or whatever material the clipboard is made from.
Commercial Cleaning and Janitorial Services Serving Chester County, PA
The professional commercial cleaning industry plays a significant role in stopping the spread of infection in healthcare centers. Identifying high-touch surfaces and items in a healthcare center is a necessary first step. Transcend offers commercial cleaning and janitorial services that can help minimize the contact staff and patients have with disease-causing droplets to keep every building user in excellent health.
Transcend provides healthcare organizations in Chester County, PA with strategic and transformational services that directly affect positive business outcomes thanks to our enhance, guard, and preserve tactics. Contact us so we can maximize the value you receive from the cleaning subcontractor for your healthcare center, from the office to the break room and every part of the facility.