How to use a Digital Checklist for Hospital Housekeeping
Hospital housekeeping and cleaning standards are of essential importance and should be monitored as efficiently as possible to increase patient safety and comply with hygiene standards at all times. Hospital cleaning must meet different standards than normal building cleaning, because in the hospital bacteria, viruses and germs endanger the health of the patients.
Cleaning staff must be familiar with the various cleaning regulations and disinfectants and know exactly what needs to be done to ensure that patient rooms, operating rooms, and all other rooms and areas are perfectly clean. Digital checklists help to ensure effective cleaning routines and hospital hygiene. Establish a safer monitoring of hospital cleaning standards using the newest available technology.
This article covers the following topics:
Hospital cleaning challenges
Hospital cleaning has not only an aesthetic function that promotes well-being, but also, and more importantly, a vital role in infection prevention for patients, staff, and visitors. Due to the debilitating nature of many hospital patients, absolute hygiene is essential to prevent infections caused by hospitalization (nosocomial infections)
In hospital cleaning, professional solutions are needed when it comes to implementing the stringent hygiene requirements. While many hospitals have their own cleaning services, more and more are also outsourcing hospital cleaning to external service providers, professional commercial cleaning companies. In this way, the very specific cleaning tasks are handled by specialized and highly trained professionals. While the hospital’s resources are used for the core, life-saving activities.
Expert hospital cleaning requires specialized expertise, precisely coordinated work procedures, and above-average knowledge of the necessary cleaning processes, equipment, and supplies. Comprehensive training prepares every hospital cleaning staff member for the job.
Disinfection plays an important role in hospital cleaning, and is used for cleaning floors as well as sanitary facilities. Operating room cleaning presents a particular challenge, as here life-saving equipment and instruments must be kept sterile and any potential source of infection must be strictly controlled.
Hospitals establish mandatory hygiene plans that serve as guidelines for hospital cleaning. They are guided by the “Guideline for Hospital Hygiene and Infection Prevention” issued by the Robert Koch Institute. It contains recommendations for the prevention of hospital-acquired infections, which serve as a basis and standard for preventive measures in hospitals and care facilities.
These guidelines and hygiene plans serve professional building cleaning companies and hospital cleaning staff as binding specifications for the implementation of all cleaning processes. They also set the framework for occupational safety for employees in hospital cleaning.
Areas to be monitored in the hospital
Establishing and monitoring an effective housekeeping plan in a hospital is a highly complex task which requires constant attention. Hospital staff should be frequently checked, informed and trained on appropriate hygiene and cleaning procedures.
The following 3 steps are critical to housekeeping and ensuring a hygienic environment at all times:
1. STEP: Checking frequently used areas and surfaces
Frequently used areas such as, operating rooms, emergency rooms and intensive care units have to be routinely monitored by hospital administrators as to their cleaning status. These areas are at high-risk for contamination and should follow the required guidelines for cleaning.
2. STEP: Restocking supplies
Cleaning supplies, PPE and other necessary equipment should be frequently checked and appropriately restocked. Monitoring the stock of supplies is essential to the upkeep of hospital cleanness and safety.
3. STEP: Checking personal hand hygiene
Even the most essential and self-explanatory steps such as hand hygiene among staff members needs to be monitored regularly and corrected whenever necessary. Human resource management reminds staff of important policies and trains new staff to ensure safe practices in all areas of the building.
An App for Hospital Cleaning and Housekeeping
With Lumiform, you can more easily comply with the ever-increasing legal requirements for cleaning in hospitals and the documentation of processes. Documenting all cleaning tasks with the mobile app via smartphone or tablet is more reliable than paper lists. Clean, transparent documentation helps avoid hefty fines and ensure a reliable hygienic environment in the hospital.
Using a mobile and digital app for hospital housekeeping gives you the following benefits:
- Generate real-time data about your processes. This makes quality and safety measurable for the first time and you can use the data to continuously improve processes.
- Reports are generated completely automatically, which saves you the need to do all the manual follow-up work.
- Increase the efficiency of your internal processes: Solve incidents up to 4x faster than before through more efficient communication within the team, with third parties and with management and faster reporting of incidents.
- Save time with easier analysis of all data and faster identification of areas that need your attention.
- Continuous improvement of quality and safety: With the flexible checklist construction kit, you can continuously optimize internal checks and processes. The Lumiform guides the examiner through the exam, no training is required.
- Very easy to use with no margin for error for employees. The app offers less complexity in documenting or filling out checklists than complicated paper or Excel lists.
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