The Dirty Truth About Hospital Cleaning
Unless you are an employee or are visiting a sick friend or loved one, most people only go to a hospital because they’re in poor health and need to get better. Most people just accept that the hospital is clean. Sadly, this is not always the case. It’s not unheard of for hospitals to use substandard, low-cost medical cleaning services or, even worse, a general cleaning company.
In some cases, hospitals are visibly dirty. This does not only apply to hospitals in developing countries or rural health-care facilities but has been known to happen in what are supposed to be good hospitals in good areas.
Those are extreme examples and, fortunately, are rare in most places. But, it only tells half the story. A hospital could appear to be clean to the casual observer. This will give him or her a false sense of security. What a person often cannot see is the harmful microorganisms, pathogens, and viruses that are lurking in supposedly “clean” hospitals.
Medical cleaning services is a highly specialized practice requiring extensive training, experience, and the use of the correct cleaning materials and special cleaning protocols. A general janitorial services company could deliver sparkling floors, clean windows, and fresh smelling restrooms, which gives the appearance of a clean facility.
Unfortunately, that does not mean the hospital is hygienic and correctly sanitized, germ-free, and safe for patients, visitors, and staff. A patient who is recuperating from a specific condition or operation believes he or she is safe and secure in the “clean” hospital.
However, no matter how good the service of the doctors and nurses are, if the hospital is not hygienic, patients run the risk of contracting another illness, hospital-acquired infection or health-care-associated infection. Sometimes, these are more serious than the condition for which he or she was originally admitted.
While this might sound like a rare occurrence and something that is only likely to occur in a small, out-of-the-way hospital, it can and does happen in some of the bigger and better hospitals.
Despite a multitude of regulations, health inspections and other measures, lapses in quality cleaning can happen. The right medical cleaning services vendor will ensure it doesn’t.
A hospital’s reputation is extremely important and a concerned patient can do research before deciding on which health-care provider to use. One indicator is its HCAHPS scores. These surveys rate the patient’s overall hospital experience, and the cleanliness and hygiene of the hospital is a big factor.
Social media is another source of information. Remember, however, some people tend to exaggerate a poor experience. So, don’t look at the opinion of one or two dissatisfied people. If you see a pattern of complaints, then alarm bells should ring. Personal referrals from friends who have stayed at the hospital are another good indicator.
What the Better Hospitals are Doing to Ensure a Safe & Hygienic Environment
Although poor hospital hygiene is more common than most people realize, it’s not all doom and gloom. The majority of health-care facilities go to great lengths to ensure they are correctly cleaned and sanitized.
Those that contract with a quality medical cleaning services company rarely, if ever, have issues. If they do, the cause is identified very early on and rectified before there’s any danger to patients, staff or visitors.
Quality professional cleaning companies work with hospital staff to guarantee best practices are followed, and the highest standards are maintained.
Some of the Practices the Medical Cleaning Companies Follow Include:
- A large emphasis is placed on regular quality training in hospital cleaning best practices.
- Deploy staff with the necessary experience in health-care cleaning
- Ensure staff are screened for aptitude, skill, work ethic, and honesty
- Supervise work closely
- Make use of top-quality cleaning materials and EPA-approved disinfectant cleaning agents
- Understand and comply with HIPPA and OSHA policies and procedures, as well as all other local, state, and federal regulations
- Regularly test the effectiveness of its cleaning
- Stay up to date with new technologies and trends within its industry, as well as the health-care profession
Another good indicator of a quality medical cleaning services company is its CIMS certification. CIMS, or Cleaning Industry Management Standard, monitors and regulates members to ensure excellent service and use of best practices. CIMS-certified companies will give you some assurance the hospital is held to high standards from an independent regulatory body.
Maintaining a Healthy Hospital
If you want to avoid regulatory issues and guarantee the health and well-being of patients, staff, and visitors, take your time when selecting a professional cleaning company. Not only does the reputation and financial stability of the facility depend on quality health-care cleaning but lives are literally at risk. Even one or two cases of hospital-acquired infections could do long-term harm to your facility.
The main point of the Hippocratic Oath is to first do no harm. By neglecting to make sure a facility is adequately clean, sanitized, and hygienic, you are neglecting one of your primary responsibilities.
By nature, hospitals are dangerous places. The staff, management, and the medical cleaning services have a serious responsibility to make sure the hospital is healthy, safe, and hygienic.
There is simply no excuse for any lapse in the quality of cleanliness.
One company that ticks all the right boxes when it comes to medical cleaning services is iNX. The company has a strict policy on screening all employees so it only hires the best. The employees are then trained extensively on all aspects of health-care cleaning and work closely with others until they have the necessary experience to perform at their peak.
The company uses only the best equipment and cleaning materials and uses green-friendly products wherever possible. It is also up to date with new developments in cleaning technology, which allows the company to offer better, faster, and more cost-effective cleaning as these technologies develop.
iNX is a trusted name in medical cleaning services. Give the company a call to inquire about its hospital and medical facility cleaning plans to avoid the consequences of substandard cleaning.