Updated: Oct 31, 2019
You would think that hospitals or well-established health facilities would be among the most sanitary and infection-free places imaginable. But you’d be wrong. In fact, according to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality infections (of various kinds and degrees of seriousness) are the “most common complication among people receiving hospital care."
Knowing how to keep hospitals clean is no easy task.
Doing so requires the following:
An understanding of how infections are spread
Clear procedures for cleaning and sanitizing
A great disinfectant like Sterifab
The Problem of HAIs
While health care–associated infections (HAIs) in the United States are actually decreasing, it remains a problem. The CDC estimated that approximately 722,000 HAIs had been reported in 2012; and of those some 75,000 died. A remarkable statistic by any measure.
Why You Need the Best Disinfectant in Hospitals
The reason behind these numbers is that hospitals and related health care facilities are teeming with bacteria (and other microbes). To make matters worse, in an environment where so many people are sick, patients are more prone to infections because of their illnesses. So needless to say, maintaining a sterile, bacteria-free environment is crucial.
The Growing Problem of Bacteria in Health Care Facilities
Despite the fact that HAIs are decreasing, bacteria in health care facilities is actually a growing problem. The number of multidrug-resistant organisms continues to increase and the result is that a large number of infections are more difficult to treat.
Some critics contend that the problematic spread of infections in hospitals and health care facilities should be laid at the door of administrators. In other words, these officials are accused of being more fixated on the financial aspects of health care than on quality outcomes for patients.
However, in fairness to those responsible for managing hospitals, not everything is preventable, and maintaining a clean, sterile environment is challenging. But it is possible to ensure that facilities are free of infectious organisms, if the health care workers use the correct precautions and procedures.
Understanding the Spread of Infection in Hospitals
Virtually everything that comes into contact with a patient sooner or later becomes contaminated with that patient’s bacteria. To know how to properly disinfect in hospital, you need to also understand how often contamination results in transmission and how often this results in infection. With this knowledge, hospitals and health care facilities can come up with an effective disinfecting procedure that includes the use of a disinfectant like Sterifab.
Health care workers are the principal thoroughfare for pathogen transmission, many authorities also contend that many patients pick up these organisms from objects in the environment ̶ such as contaminated sinks or ice machines. In fact, hospital rooms are crammed with equipment, any piece of which can be the device that spreads bacteria to another patient or hospital staff member. Monitors, tubes, screens and devices of every kind can all play host to unwanted bacteria ̶ especially since a lot of hospital equipment is extremely complex and difficult to clean.
The fact is that normal, ordinary places in hospitals can sources of contamination. Studies have shown that bacteria have been cultured from surfaces in the rooms several days after infected patients have left.
What’s more troubling is that infectious agents do not remain in hospital rooms. They migrate. Doctors, nurses, and other health care workers are entering patient rooms throughout the day then moving about the hospital, and they can easily carry bacteria with them as they move. A single touch of a contaminated bedside table or a telephone can deliver contaminants to the nurse’s station, door handles, in fact just about any surface in the hospital.
However, the is no ideal standard for hospital disinfection. Procedures, products used and rates of success differ enormously from hospital to hospital.
Varying Standards of Cleanliness
One major problem is that there are often varying standards of cleanliness between hospitals. In fact, standards and protocols within individual hospitals standards also differ, depending on the department. A lot of this comes down to the efficiency of the hospital cleaning staff, a fact which may not be acknowledged by management. Unfortunately, most members of the cleaning staff are low-paid, largely unskilled workers who lack the awareness and training required to maintain high standards of cleanliness.
Solution 1: Educate Hospital Staff
Still, many hospitals are aware of the critical role that these workers play in the day-to-day running of their institutions and a good many of them have invested in education and other attempts to make their cleaning personnel feel like they are part of the health care team.
Unfortunately, there is a high turnover rate among these service employees and no one has yet devised an effective way to determine whether their cleaning and disinfection methods are truly effective. Needless to say, this is still problematic if a hospital has a well-trained, consciousness cleaning staff.
Solution 2: Use the Right Disinfectant...Regularly
At Sterifab we know that contamination is a significant problem in virtually all health care facilities and hospitals. One of the main Sterifab applications is preventing the spread of infection. But it requires a well-trained staff and meticulous cleaning procedures, enacted daily. Rooms and equipment need to be disinfected with Sterifab or a similar product so than can be safe for both patients and health care providers.
Why Sterifab Is the Best Disinfectant
Many health care facilities have been using Sterifab for years. Given it's EPA approval and non-residual properties, Sterifab has long been the go-to cleansing agent in hospitals and other health care facilities. It is specially designed for health care staff use and meets the requirements for hospital bactericidal activity, killing a broad spectrum of pathogens while it also cleans and deodorizes.
Plus, it also gets rid of mold and mildew on clean, non-porous surfaces, and can be used just as successfully on porous surfaces such as mattresses.
Making Your Choice
Obviously, the number and types of bacteria and dangerous organisms found in health care facilities can vary widely, so the cleaning staff should the select the cleaners and disinfectants that best fit their need.
Guesswork is not needed, since the CDC publishes guidelines to help in the selection process. Guidelines, we might add, that Sterifab adheres to.
Looking for the Best Disinfectant and Cleaner?
Consider the following factors:
Types of microorganisms (̶pathogenic or nonpathogenic)
Contaminated areas and types of surfaces that need disinfection
Product stability, performance and storage conditions
Application method- labor and contact time allowed
If you work in a health care facility, we highly recommend using Sterifab as a disinfectant.