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Are Our Hospital Floors Clean?

Thursday 10th May 2018

Are Our Hospital Floors Clean?

No! I think not. Based on first hand experience during recent Floor cleaning demonstrations and onsite inspections.

In the Healthcare Industry, floors are considered as noncritical items. As there is a low risk of contact with the skin the chances of infection to patients or staff is often ignored. This has led to a lot of controversy over how to clean floors.

  • What is the correct method of floor cleaning
  • Should we use Sanitizers
  • Is it better to use disposable mops to avoid cross contamination
  • Manual or Machine Cleaning

But there is no excuse for plain dirt! See image on the right of a demonstration done this month in a Midlands Kitchen Hospital.

That is typical of the dirt found in most Hospitals in Ireland. As you can see the difference we achieved with one pass of the Floorwash M30 Floor Cleaner using only water. Despite the fact the floor had been cleaned prior to our arrival.

Quite shocking! Considering the Catering supervisor would have liked to purchase the Floorwash M30. The machine that not only cleaned the floor but would have saved time and money over the year. But there is no money in the system for basic hygiene whatever happened to duty of care to patients welfare. This is just not good enough! Which begs the question what can be done about these poor hygiene standards

Well there are plenty of thoughts on the subject. A very interesting article is that of Irish Times Author Paul Cullen “Hygiene standards criticised at Limerick Hospital”

After HIQA raised concerns over "especially poor standards" on hospital wards.

This has been one of many articles about low standards in hospital hygiene in Ireland.

The HSE has also given guidelines to Floor Cleaning although not really enforced. A copy of the National Cleaning Standards Manual can be got here.   

Hospital hygiene – is anyone taking charge?

This thought provoking article was written by Niall Hunter of Irish back in 2006.

“Late last year, the first national audit on hospital hygiene provided shocking evidence how dirty most of our hospitals are. It was found that, with concerns growing on MRSA and other hospital acquired infections, only 9% of hospitals visited received a ‘good hygiene’ rating, with 48% getting ‘poor hygiene’ rating”

Now we are in 2017 and there is still no improvement despite the subject being broached with various health ministers and top HSE executives over the time. 

Our initial question has raised much more questions but only by answering these will we find a solution.

By Tony Field
April 2017

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