The Importance of Disinfecting and Sanitizing Nursing Homes
What if you could make your nursing home that much safer for all of the seniors living there?
Nursing home housekeeping is the cornerstone of senior safety. But to make sure these retirement homes are completely safe, it's important to understand the right disinfection and sanitation practices.
Wondering what you can do to make your nursing home safer? Keep reading to discover our complete guide!
The old saying is true: an ounce of prevention really is worth a pound of cure. And when it comes to keeping a nursing home safe, that means properly isolating patients.
One example that many nursing homes now follow is forbidding or minimizing new admissions to the home. On top of that, such facilities also avoid letting in outsiders such as visitors (more on this in a minute).
The reason for this is simple: even the tightest cleaning and disinfecting regimen can only do so much. And the more people you allow into a contained environment, the more the risk of infection grows.
Sadly, proper isolation also means canceling many of the group events that bring seniors together in these homes. Such events are a valuable part of group morale, but these gatherings now put residents in genuine danger.
Doing all of this may make you feel like the bad guy. But such measures are a vital part of keeping nursing homes clean and keeping each person inside healthy and safe.
While it is crucial to limit the amount of traffic coming in and out of your nursing home it is also important to understand that there is still risk of someone within your facility catching and spreading viruses. To combat this, it is recommended to treat your facility with disinfection and sanitization services to help prevent the spread of any possible viruses present.
The professionals at Viking Pest offer Viking Pro-Clean a disinfectant and sanitization service proven to dramatically reduce the number of harmful bacteria and emerging viruses like Coronaviruses, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, Influenza A, and the H1N1 Virus.
Preventing outside visitors from coming in doesn't mean that residents cannot communicate with the outside world. However, doing so safely means mastering the art of remote communication.
Many of your residents likely have access to smartphones. You can help walk them through how to use apps such as Facetime or Skype to conduct video chats with their friends and family.
And if they don't want to fiddle with the app, there is nothing wrong with an old-fashioned phone call. If you have properly kept residents isolated, then there is little risk of infection from residents using their own phones.
Avoid Moving Patients When Possible
Sometimes, the families of residents may get frustrated with their inability to enter the nursing home. And because of this, they may be tempted to move patients into their own homes to care for them directly during the COVID-19 crisis.
While you should consider each patient on a case by case basis, it's a good idea in most instances to resist moving patients out of the nursing home. The reason for this is that they are safer inside the home than outside of it.
With a proper sanitation and disinfecting routine, you can create a controlled environment for seniors that is clean and safe. Moving them outside of the nursing home is likely to put them at more risk of contracting COVID-19 or some other illness.
On top of this, many families are not truly prepared to take care of an elderly family member. And a lapse in quality care, combined with a less-than-sterile new environment, may put a senior's life at risk.
Pay Attention to Shared Surfaces
So far, we have focused primarily on keeping patients safe. However, proper sanitation and disinfectant policies are an important way to keep your nursing home staff safe during the COVID-19 crisis.
It is equally important to avoid sharing items whenever possible. Staff should all have their own pens and pads and not have to share. For any items that do need to be shared (such as specialized equipment), make sure those are properly cleaned and disinfected on a regular basis.
Pay special attention to any shared surfaces within the home. Properly cleaning dining areas is a great way to lower the risk for your staff and residents. With constant activity in commonly frequented places such as dining areas the risk of spread from one individual to another is naturally higher. Inform your staff and residents to always wash their hands thoroughly after each time they leave their personal room or come in contact with items that others may have also touched.
To help lower the number of bacteria and viruses found on common surfaces, hire a disinfectant professional, like Viking Pest. Viking’s Pro-Clean service professionals are trained to focus the disinfectant and sanitization treatment on commonly used items and frequently touched surfaces to help maintain the health and safety of your facility.
Our knowledge of how this virus spreads and how to test for and treat it changes week by week. Sometimes, it changes day by day! That's why it's important for you to stay up to date regarding all things COVID-19.
Staying on top of such a depressing news cycle may feel exhausting at times. But it is the only way you can truly maximize the safety of your seniors.
Properly sanitizing and disinfecting during this crisis is important for all groups. Why, then, have we focused on nursing homes?
According to the CDC, nursing homes are actually at the highest risk of contracting COVID-19. That's because such homes combine many who are at a unique risk of COVID-19 and may also be suffering from a variety of underlying conditions.
That's why you need to take extraordinary measures in order to keep your nursing home safe. Hiring professionals, like Viking Pest, to disinfect and sanitize every area of your nursing home can help reduce the risk of infection.
And even when COVID-19 is behind us, it's important to know the local professionals at Viking Pest can handle all of your sanitation and disinfectant needs.
Reopening Your Facility to Visitors
When it comes time to reopen your nursing home facility to visitors, it is important to have a well-thought-out phased plan for reopening. Keep your residents, employees, and visitors safe with a reopening strategy. Fill out the form below to receive Viking's FREE reopening strategy.
Nursing Home Housekeeping: The Next Steps
Now you know the importance of proper nursing home housekeeping. But do you know who can help keep all of your seniors safe?
Viking Pest specializes in sanitation and disinfection services for your nursing home, as well as residential and commercial pest control. To learn more about how Viking can keep your nursing home safe contact us today!
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