Keeping my home clean is a constant effort, especially with two teenagers afoot. During springtime, when the trees and flora are in bloom, there is pollen and grass and dirt coming in windows and tracked in on shoes. Can you imagine how all-consuming it must be to keep a hospital clean? Open 24/7, 365 days a year; people of all kinds passing through the doors – some healthy, some knowingly ill, and some with wounds and infectious disease. Others don’t even know they have an illness. A cough here, a dirty hand wiped there; body fluids abound.
Hats off to the dedicated infection preventionists, environmental services staff, quality control folks, operations staff, nurses, and others, who work tirelessly and continuously to keep healthcare’s clinical and public spaces clean so as to minimize the transmission of disease. An effective cleaning program includes policy, protocol, product and equipment selection, training, and surveillance. One of the most important actions we can all take while working at or visiting any healthcare facility is proper hand hygiene. Next time you are cleaning your windowsills, think about the thousands of individuals working to keep healthcare clean – and please say Thank You when you see them!