As infectious organisms evolve resistance to antibiotics and antimicrobial agents, hospitals find it increasingly challenging to protect patients from secondary and surgical site infections. Patients can often face a serious risk of exposure to infections that can lead to additional health problems and extended hospital stays. When such infections happen, hospitals can suffer financial losses and damaged reputations. To help prevent this situation, companies like PREZIO Health are committed to helping hospitals reduce the spread of infections and provide a safer, healthier environment for patients.
While doctors, nurses and other hospital employees regularly do everything possible to keep themselves and their work areas sanitary, the hectic requirements of a hospital can lead to overlooking important safeguards. To reduce these occurrences, PREZIO Health assists hospitals in establishing routines and infrastructures that allow operating room staff and cleaning crews to stay focused on procedures to reduce contamination, despite the demands and distractions of the clinical environment.
Training in Sanitation of Patient Care Areas
Cleaning crews work diligently to keep the hospital clean and disinfected. Unfortunately, crews often don't have the training necessary to effectively combat disease transmission. Common items such as door handles, light switches, telephones, call buttons and grab rails tend to be overlooked by cleaning crews. These team-members require training that focuses on breaking the chain of infection through effective sanitation of patient care areas. One technique involves the use of a marking spray that glows under UV light. By applying this to important areas, crews can more easily detect places that are missed and are able to focus on areas that need extra attention.
In addition to constant staff training, hospitals must also take measures to make proper infection-prevention habits easy and convenient.
- Hand washing policy adherence: Hospitals should have in place proper handwashing guidelines and associated training for all personnel. Employees should adhere strictly to these guidelines before and after contact with patients and/or contaminated equipment. Hospitals should also ensure adequate enforcement of these policies through oversight by a dedicated Infection Control department.
- Hand sanitizer dispensers: These must be easily accessible in all areas so staff can use them each time they enter or leave a room, after using a phone, upon exiting an elevator, etc. The more readily available these dispensers are, the greater the compliance with these important procedures.
- Checklists: As hospital team members know, checklists are a great way to run through procedures when there's little time for thought. Checklists work great for sanitation by establishing clear steps to be taken, ensuring 100% accuracy.
- Procedure kits: Not having the proper supplies for routine procedures can lead to shortcuts. Avoid these by making available "can't-miss kits" that include all of the supplies necessary for the specified process. These kits ensure all necessary equipment such as disinfectant, special sponges and lint-free clothes are always present and utilized when necessary.
- Equipment maintenance and care: Patient care equipment requires special care not only in its use, but also in its cleaning and maintenance. Contaminants can find their way into and hide in areas that are difficult to access for disinfection. PREZIO Health is an industry leader in the proper maintenance and sterilization of operating room instruments and equipment , helping hospitals reduce secondary infection risks.
While it's not practical to test every patient for virulent infections, staff should be trained to spot some of the most common. If a patient shows suspicious symptoms, they should be swabbed for testing to rule out the presence of infectious conditions that require special handling and quarantine.
While it's impossible to remove all infection risk from hospitals, risks can be minimized with proper training and attention to detail. PREZIO Health is proud to be part of a thorough, integrated approach to infection reduction and a safer, healthier hospital environment for patients and employees.