Good hand hygiene is essential to the safety of both residents and staff. Hand hygiene is the basis for infection control, and the best single way to combat microbial infections. The aim of good hand hygiene is to reduce the transfer of microbes from the hands of medical staff to the patient, the transfer of the patient’s microbes to the medical staff or the environment, and to protect the patient from their own microbes. Contact infection is the most common route of infection, so hand disinfection is the most important single factor in hygiene.
Visitors should also use hand sanitiser when entering and leaving the care facility, when entering and leaving residents’ rooms, and when attending joint events. Good locations for hand sanitiser dispensers are close to entrance doors and in common areas, as well as in staff facilities.
In washing and skin care for patients, it is important to ensure that the products used are suitable for sensitive skin. It is good to choose products that both provide protection and treat and moisturise the skin.
Cleaning of medical equipment
Equipment for examinations and treatment must always be cleaned and disinfected according to the intended use after each use.
Washing of textiles
Laundry should be handled with care so that pathogens are not released into the air. A temperature of at least 60 °C is often recommended for laundry. If laundry is washed at a lower temperature, a disinfectant such as Erisan OXY+ is recommended in addition to textile detergent for improved hygiene.
Cleaning in care homes includes cleaning of residents’ rooms and public areas, toilets and wet areas, and showers and saunas. Particular attention must be paid to critical contact surfaces such as door handles and light switches. In accordance with the aseptic order of cleaning, cleaning proceeds from cleaner to dirtier areas and from top to bottom. An easy and effective way to freshen the air and textiles is to spray odour-neutralising air freshener after cleaning. Surface hygiene can be tested with Hygicult TPC or Orion Clean Card surface hygiene tests.
Nursing home kitchens
Cleaning in kitchens and dining areas is also carried out from cleaner to dirtier areas. Special attention should be paid to all surfaces that are often touched in dining areas, such as the backs of chairs and table surfaces.