Hygiene is an important priority in any hospital setting. Hospitals house a variety of patients ranging from those suffering from serious contagious illnesses to those entering for cancer treatment. Due to the variety of patients and the ability of germs to spread, it is of vital importance for hospitals to maintain a clean and sanitary environment. Infection control is possible if all hospital visitors and staff follow basic procedures.
It seems that hand sanitizers are found in every corner of a hospital setting. It’s standard to have hand sanitizing dispensers at the entrance to every patient room inside a hospital. Sanitizers are useful for killing any bacteria and other germs that may be brought in or taken out of a hospital setting. All hospital visitors are urged to use hand sanitizing agents as other medical staff use more advanced techniques to keep hands clean.
Hand Hygiene For Hospital Staff
All staff members that deal directly with patients practice very rigorous hand hygiene standards. For example, nurses are taught to wash their hands in a specific manner for about one minute. Regular anti-bacterial soap is good enough for sanitizing the hands of hospital staff. Additionally, alcohol based wipes or disinfectants can be used along with thorough hand washing for hospital workers. It is also a general protocol for hospital staff to wear examination gloves whenever there is contact between hands and any part of a patient.
General Hygiene Practices
All nurses and other hospital staff take protective measures whenever there is the possibility of patients releasing any bodily fluids such as blood, saliva, mucus, urine and feces. Face shields are worn to prevent the spread of infection between patients and staff. Full body gowns protect nurses and other workers during procedures involving possible splashing of a patient’s bodily fluids. All patient linen is also changed daily and then disinfected in controlled cleaning facilities. The floors and most surfaces of patient’s rooms are wiped down with disinfecting agents which may include chlorine and other alcohol based cleaning agents.
Although proper hand washing is important, it doesn’t do much if it is paired with germ riddled equipment. Every examination tool is thoroughly cleaned through a process of steam cleaning and cleaning with a glutaraldehyde solution.
All patient rooms in hospitals are equipped with air filtration systems that prevent any common illnesses. Commercial quality filters are installed into the ventilation system of every room. The filters are designed to capture dust, allergens, smoke, mites and other harmful particles or microorganisms. Hospital have air filters with high MERV ratings that remove some of the smallest air contaminants such as bacteria and airborne bodily secretions. Some patient rooms may have their own standing units of air purifiers that use additional methods such as ionic and electrostatic technology to ensure high quality indoor air.
The spread of infections and other illnesses is a concern for any hospital setting. All nurses, doctors and other staff are always expected to follow rigorous hygiene practices.