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Safety and Wellness

We Clean Carefully and Thoughtfully: Advancing Patient Room Cleaning to Reduce Hospital Acquired Infections

EVS and EOC working together to keep patients safe.

The global pandemic caused by COVID-19 brought heightened awareness and scrutiny for how we keep our spaces clean, particularly in health care settings.

But the importance of preventing the spread of germs on surfaces had been a priority for Gillette Children’s well before COVID-19.

To address some of these concerns, Gillette partnered with Ecolab, to implement Ecolab’s Patient Room Program, which helps ensure patient rooms are consistently and thoroughly cleaned.

Gillette’s Environment of Care (EOC) team, wanted to identify opportunities to adjust our patient room cleaning practices to increase environmental cleaning compliance and help decrease hospital-acquired infections (HAIs), which can be contracted by patients coming into contact with unclean hands or surfaces while receiving medical treatment. This would help ensure patient rooms are consistently cleaned.

Innovative Cleaning

Gillette partnered with Ecolab to implement its Patient Room Program, which helps ensure patient rooms are consistently cleaned.

This program uses OxyCide™ Daily Disinfectant Cleaner with sporicidal activity to clean and disinfect high-touch surfaces like sinks and tabletops.

The program includes the use of Ecolab's DAZO® Fluorescent Marking Gel and UV flashlight to quickly and objectively measure and audit how thoroughly surfaces have been cleaned.

“There is a member of our staff who as part of their additional responsibilities, is tasked with entering clinical spaces prior to them being cleaned. This individual uses the DAZO® bioluminescent marker (it’s like invisible ink that can be seen using ultraviolet light) to mark certain high-touch objects and surfaces throughout the room,” says Brian Smidt, manager of Environment of Care at Gillette. “If the room has been cleaned properly, all of the marked spots should be gone. After the cleaning has been performed, we all can go in to see if any spots have been missed.”

DAZO in useUsing these methods in collaboration with Ecolab, Gillette was able to streamline our cleaning procedures, saving staff time while also reducing potential exposure to HACs for our patients.

This program also features dashboards to track and share DAZO® room cleanliness results and identify actionable opportunities for additional hands-on training.

The Impact of the Work

The Patient Room Program helped establish a clear and sustained relationship between increased monitoring, feedback and training and help decreased incidence of HAIs.

Gillette saw high-touch surface cleaning compliance increase to 90% and saw a 65% decrease in HAIs in the same three-year period, helping drive profitability due to HAI cost avoidance by reducing the amount of time patients had to spend in the hospital and most importantly, keeping our patients safe during their stay.

“At Gillette, our main goal is that every single person who sets foot in one of our facilities has a safe and positive experience. Keeping our clinical spaces clean and sanitized is an essential part of that,” says Paul Yee, supervisor of Environmental Services at Gillette.

“We take this task personally all the time, but we’re incredibly proud to have established such a strong baseline for success prior to COVID-19. If anything, the pandemic just reinforced the importance of the work we do each day. We want Gillette to be a safe haven for our patients and families, and our collaboration with Ecolab played a large role in making that possible.”

EVS and EOC working together to keep patients safe.