Four steps to clean hospitals

Posted

8th March 2019

Blog

Drs Stephanie Dancer and Alex Kramer, two of the biggest names in hospital cleaning and disinfection, have joined forces to write a review in the Journal of Hospital Infection, setting out four steps to clean hospitals. First LOOK, then PLAN, next CLEAN, and finally DRY.

The authors identified a gap in the literature: no articles offer a practical overview of how to clean a hospital bed space daily. So, the article aims to provide an evidence-based and ordered set of recommendations around achieving effective cleaning of a bed space.

The LOOK - The first step in the process is a visual assessment of the space to be cleaned. This needs to encompass temperature, smell, visible debris, clutter, space, lighting, patient status, and presence of clinical staff and visitors. The paper provides some helpful ‘real world’ images of how a cluttered bed space looks, and how this can impede the subsequent cleaning process.

The PLAN - Based on the visual assessment, how should the bed space be optimised for effective cleaning? This should include washing hands; re-aligning furniture, equipment and patient’s belongings for access; removal of litter, food, spillages, debris; and replenishing supplies if needed.

The CLEAN - The authors use the term 'clean' to encompass both cleaning and disinfection. This step is the 'active' step, but the other three steps are just as important in delivering an effective cleaning process. The article includes sensible advice about the rational use of disinfectants, and the use of disinfectant wipes – including advocating the GAMA ‘S’ shaped pattern for wiping (shown right).

S-shape

The DRY - Perhaps the most underrated and understudied part of the process is drying. Wet surfaces introduce the risk of recontamination and biofilm formation. Therefore, surfaces should either be dried manually, or processes used that don’t require drying (such as the use of disinfectant wipes, which don’t ‘over-wet’ surfaces). This is the same principle as when decontaminating hands, where drying is a critical part of the process.

This review paper provides an evidence based 'handbook' for achieving effective cleaning and disinfection of bed spaces in hospitals. A clear focus on visual inspection of the bed space (the LOOK), careful consideration of the local application of the cleaning policies in the Trust (the PLAN), attention to the detail of the cleaning and disinfection activities themselves (the CLEAN), and not forgetting the need to leave surfaces dry afterwards (the DRY) will deliver a robust, repeatable, and effective cleaning process.

Share this article

Tags

Latest News

Blog
21.09.2020_Improving hospital cleaning and disinfection.jpg

Improving hospital cleaning and disinfection

The third largest health board in Scotland has recently published…

Company news
2019_office_environment_Gama_1366x400px.jpg

Former International CEO agrees relationship with …

Infection prevention has never been more important. We're thrille…

Products
31.07.2019_Disinfectant_wipes_reduce_HCAIs_Gama_1366x400px.jpg

Clinell efficacy against coronavirus (COVID-19)

Clinell Universal and Antimicrobial Hand Wipes are effective agai…

Blog
shutterstock_289471151.jpg

28 Australian Societies provide consensus on COVID…

Sourcing up-to-date reliable information on COVID-19 management a…

Blog
210.08.2020_COVID-19-Transmission.jpg

COVID-19 transmission: droplet, contact, or aeroso…

There has been lots of recent controversy about the transmission …

Blog
17.08.2020_Latest review of the effectiveness of disinfectant wipes.jpg

Latest review of the effectiveness of disinfectant…

The latest review covering the range of approaches to disinfectan…

Company news
RandD-Careers-banner-wbstb.jpg

Bolstering our Science & Innovation Team to help b…

Infection prevention has changed. It’s no longer about stopping t…

Blog
20.07.2020_Let’s not forget MRSA and the risk from contaminated surfaces-01-01 copy.jpg

Let’s not forget MRSA and the risk from contaminat…

There is strong evidence that MRSA transmission dynamics can incl…