As an owner or manager of an urgent care facility, you know just how important good health is. Keeping a facility clean and up to good hygiene standards is one thing. Keeping an urgent care facility clean and germ-free is a completely different thing.
An urgent care facility has people in and out of it on a constant basis. And most of the time, these people come in and out with germs such as viruses and bacteria. It’s up to you to have good hygiene practices set in place to keep your facility as clean as possible at all times.
Because you’re working with patients that carry illnesses with them, you need to have better and more defined cleaning procedures than other types of businesses. You want patients to come to you to get better, not to get sick. Keep your patients happy and healthy by learning some of the best hygiene practices for urgent care facilities!
Continue reading below to find out more!
1. Complete a Cleanliness Evaluation
Your first step in practicing good hygiene in your office is to evaluate the current status of it. How often have you had the office cleaned from top to bottom? It’s time to start looking at all of those small cracks and other places where you wouldn’t normally look.
Check under the cabinets for built-up dust. Be sure that everything on top of the counters is being picked up when the counters are getting wiped down. Check-in all the places that you might not be able to see when standing up.
Bend down and look under the cabinets, look up at the ceiling tiles, and complete a full evaluation. Once your evaluation is complete, you’ll then know what things need to be cleaned the most.
2. Create a Plan with Your Staff
After performing your evaluation, create a plan with your staff on how you want to address the issues you discovered. With the help of your staff, come up with a solid solution for how everyone can help keep the facility clean. In most cases, staff members place the weight of cleaning on the after-hours cleaning crew.
However, to keep everyone safe and healthy throughout the entire day, there needs to be a cleaning plan in place for everyone to follow throughout the entire workday. Instead of putting all of the cleaning tasks on one person, consider making it a team effort.
For example, after a patient leaves an exam room, the staff member working with that patient should be in charge of wiping everything down, putting out a new protective paper on the exam table, and so on.
3. Use Proper Hand-Washing Strategies
Although there are several hand sanitizer stations located around your facility, it’s essential that you let your staff know how important it is to wash their hands with soap and warm water as well. Hand sanitizer is a great option when you’re unable to wash your hands in the sink, but it should never take the place of a solid hand washing.
Hand sanitizer doesn’t kill all types of germs, but proper handwashing does. Go over proper handwashing techniques with all staff members and ensure that handwashing instructions are posted above all sinks.
4. Have Waste-Management Protocols
The waste management protocol is another important factor to consider. What protocols do you have set in place for your facility staff members to follow? For example, all staff members should wear gloves when handling any type of waste or contaminated substances.
Gloves should be disposed of properly and staff should wash hands in the correct manner when finished handling it. Another great idea is to have trash bins that are color-coordinated. This helps staff members know what type of waste goes where, which allows everyone to know how a specific waste bin should be handled.
Any fluids should be disposed of in the proper waste bin. Pouring fluids down the sink leaves a risk of staff members becoming splashed with it. Have your own specific waste-management protocols and ensure that all staff members follow and understand them.
5. Remove All Magazines From Waiting Area
Although magazines are a common waiting area item, it’s best to keep these germs harvesters out of your facility. When patients come in, either contagious or not, they’ll handle the magazines. When they’re done, they set them down for the next patient to pick up and handle.
Without thinking, patients will touch their faces and mouths before washing their hands. This is a common way for germs to spread throughout the facility. Remove all magazines and replace them with boxes of tissues instead.
You should also be sure to provide hand sanitizer in the waiting area as well.
6. Outsource When Needed
As an urgent care facility manager, there’s only so much you and your staff can do to keep the office clean. Never be afraid to outsource. Your staff members should still keep up with their cleaning routines, and then to ensure everything is as it should be, have a cleaning service come in and do the deep cleaning for you.
This will give you some peace of mind in knowing that the professionals are there to keep things as they should be. A professional cleaning service will have all of the proper cleaning products and equipment to get the job done right.
Follow These Good Hygiene Practices to Keep Everyone Healthy
To keep your urgent care facility clean and healthy, follow these good hygiene practices. The tips listed above are easy to follow and in return, give you the outcome your facility needs.
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