Cleaning in healthcare facilities requires a higher level of knowledge, training, and experience.
Whether your facility is a doctor’s office, clinic, or ambulatory care center, commercial cleaning during COVID goes way beyond the typical general cleaning services offered to commercial businesses.
General cleaning will get rid of dirt and keep your facility clean, but it is not effective at the disinfection of your healthcare facility. Cleaning alone will not kill the coronavirus germs.
Cleaning and disinfecting is the only way to kill the SARS-CoV-2 virus that leads to COVID-19. Proper disinfection is the best preventative measure to combat COVID-19 and enhance infection control, according to the Center for Disease Control (CDC). While coronavirus is most commonly contracted by contact with someone who has been infected, it can also be transferred from contaminated surfaces. Updated research from the National Institute of Health (NIH) documents the potential of germs and pathogens to remain active for days on some hard surfaces.
Commercial Cleaning Standards in Healthcare Facilities
Anyone who is cleaning in your healthcare facility needs to follow strict guidelines to ensure effective infection control. This includes the following best practices:
- Appropriate use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) during cleaning
- Separate cleaning and disinfecting processes for more effective infection control
- Use of an EPA-registered disinfectant for controlling COVID and other viruses
- Special emphasis on disinfecting surfaces in patient areas and areas nearby patients
- Vacuums should be low-impact and equipped with high-efficiency HEPA filters
- Auto-scrubbers and carpet extractors should also provide high-level filtration
- Mop bucket solution and cleaning caddy with disinfectant should be changed more frequently
The CDC also recommends more frequent cleaning and disinfection for frequently touched areas, such as telephones, handlebars, grips, buttons, and doorknobs. If wipes or cloths are used to apply disinfectants, make sure to pay close attention to the dwell time listed on the label. Surfaces need to remain wet for the recommended time to be effective at infection control. If wipes are used, this may require more than one application.
Finally, clean, disinfect, and maintain all commercial cleaning equipment in accordance with manufacturer guidelines for daily, weekly, and monthly schedules.
Detailed Checklists and Monitoring
Healthcare facilities should create detailed checklists for areas to be cleaned and disinfected, along with any unique cleaning needs. Require cleaning crews to fill them out fully and return them for every cleaning so that you can confirm the work’s been done to your satisfaction.
This can provide peace of mind for staff, patients, administrators, and visitors that your healthcare facility is doing everything it can to keep your facility safe.
Training Standards in Healthcare Facilities
Mitigating the spread of COVID, other viruses, and germs are serious business. Commercial cleaning services must be experienced and trained to provide care for healthcare facilities. This includes compliance with state and local health requirements and training such as:
- Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO)
- OSHA compliance for Hazard Communication
- OSHA Standard Bloodborne Pathogens
- GBAC certification for Biorisk
In addition, train commercial cleaning crews on the proper use of equipment and supplies, universal precautions, and Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) and Safety Data Sheets (SDSs) from OSHA.
Many healthcare facilities and ambulatory care centers are opting for additional treatments that offer longer-lasting protection against COVID-19, other viruses, and germs. For example, OpenWorks’ elite network of service providers offers a Continuous Care program. This includes the application of an antimicrobial surface protectant that is applied after surfaces have been cleaned and disinfected.
The protectant bonds with surfaces to provide continuous protection from germs and bacteria for up to 90 days. It coats surfaces with a nano-bed shield of molecular spikes that pierce germs and bacteria cells and ruptures the membrane to inhibit the growth of microorganisms.
OpenWorks Complete Cleaning and Disinfection Services
OpenWorks’ elite network of service providers offers several tiers of service as part of its TotalWorksTM complete cleaning and disinfection system.
Healthcare facilities can choose from three levels of SaniServicesTM. Each level includes the use of EPA List-N-approved disinfectant products and disinfection of high-touch surfaces. InfectaGuardTM is a deep cleaning and disinfecting service. It includes cleaning and disinfecting of difficult-to-reach surfaces and surfaces that may not be part of routine cleaning. InfectaGuard+TM includes deep cleaning for any confirmed COVID-19 cases or biohazards along with a 6-step process for decontamination, as outlined by the Global Biorisk Advisory Council.
OpenWorks’ elite network of service providers supplies extraordinary commercial healthcare cleaning and disinfection services to provide a clean and healthy environment for your staff and patients. With decades of experience, OpenWorks is committed to providing the most effective and innovative processes, highly trained professional cleaners using the latest cleaning technology and practices, and the best service in the industry.
Contact OpenWorks to get an estimate for cleaning, disinfection, and infection control services in your ambulatory or healthcare facility.