Essential guide: infection control checklist in hospital and aged care facilities

Healthcare | 7/03/2022

Essential guide: infection control checklist in hospital and aged care facilities

Infections in hospital and aged care settings pose serious risks to patients, staff and those visiting loved ones. Maintaining a clean healthcare environment is the most effective way to both prevent and reduce the spread of hospital-acquired infections (HAIs). But with so many surfaces, rooms and equipment vulnerable to spreading disease, safeguarding hospital patients and aged care residents requires proper cleanliness and processes at all times. To assist in this large undertaking, healthcare cleaning staff should use an infection control checklist as a comprehensive cleaning guide that outlines the essential cleaning needs throughout their healthcare facility.

The importance of infectious disease control

Every year, 165,000 healthcare-associated infections occur at Australian hospitals. These infections are extremely costly to hospitals and are a threat to patient safety. However, many HAIs can be avoided with proper cleaning protocols in place. In healthcare environments, infectious disease control checklists help maintain:

  1. Quality patient care.
  2. Reduced health risks within the facility.
  3. Compliance guidelines.
  4. Improved patient outcomes.

Aged individuals are much more susceptible to disease and infection, which makes them some of the most vulnerable people. Because of this, community and public health have to be a top priority for cleaning staff in aged care settings and may require additional tasks beyond those seen in standard medical buildings. Additionally, quality environmental cleaning helps:

  1. Protect residents’ well-being and quality of life.
  2. Prevent the spread of pathogens throughout the residential place.

Guide: Infection control checklist in hospital and aged care settings

Rubbermaid Commercial Products provides a detailed hospital cleaning checklist and an aged care cleaning checklist that include recommendations made by The Association for Health Care Environment. These guidelines work to keep patient and resident rooms, bathrooms and floors clean. Here are some key best practices outlined in the checklists.

Before cleaning: Put on personal protective equipment (PPE) and sanitise hands before entering the patient’s room. The cleaning cart should be stocked with all needed supplies (mops, cloths, solutions, sanitising agents) prior to cleaning. Finally, identify any health risks or precautions needed if the patient is present in the room and knock before entering.

General cleaning: Start by clearing all surfaces and high-touch areas of dust and debris. Remove any dirty linen and place them in their proper containers. Be sure to sanitise your hands before putting clean linen back on the bed. Save the floors for last and clean them with a damp mop after sweeping.

After cleaning: Perform a quality check once all parts of the checklist are complete. Ensure good hand hygiene by santising when everything is done.

For more in depth guidance on best practices for infection control in hospitals, take a look at Rubbermaid’s ebook about preventing the spread of infection in hospitals.

Rubbermaid also provides additional cleaning checklists and methods across different industries, including education, hospitality, retail and property management. Each industry checklist offers equipment, agent and technique suggestions specific to the environment. 

How to digitise your infection control checklist

To make cleaning and infection control even more effective and seamless, consider a digitised management system. Rubbermaid Commercial Products’ SMARTCLEAN is an all-in-one platform with many features that improve current infection control practices. SMARTCLEAN helps all members of healthcare environments optimise their workflows and ensure best practice protocols are being met in order to prevent and slow the spread of infectious diseases.

With some of the most vulnerable patients being cared for in hospitals and aged care facilities, SMARTCLEAN is a digital solution that puts patients’ health and safety at the forefront. If you’re ready to digitise your infection prevention practices, get in touch with a Rubbermaid specialist today and request a SMARTCLEAN demo.

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