In a world slowly recovering from one of the deadliest pandemics in human history, cleanliness has risen to the top of everyone’s priority list. Hospitals across the globe have set up strict cleaning protocols with the hope of increasing public safety. And while these drawn-out procedures are giving us peace of mind, for now, they’re also adding unnecessary minutes to hospital wait times — wait times that are already at an all-time high.
If the medical community can’t find a balance in disinfecting hospital rooms and admitting new patients, the consequence will be fatal.
The solution to getting more people in and out of hospital doors? Avrika.
COVID-19 spreads fast, but Avrika disinfection products kill the virus faster. Tested in over 65 globally-acclaimed labs, Avrika is the only product on the market with the power to keep the world safe in more ways than one.
Timing of Hospital Room Cleaning and Disinfection
An important component of quality care is timely care. Cleaning and disinfection practices need to be strategized according to efficiency. It does not benefit the patient who needs emergency surgery or an ICU bed to wait several hours for their room to be disinfected before they can proceed.
An organized, economical approach can provide patients a safe environment and appropriate timing. In general, thorough cleaning of a hospital room can be done in under 20 minutes. This is true of operating rooms, ICU, emergency bays, and medical-surgical rooms.
The infection status of the previous patient and the vulnerability of the one to follow will depend on the staffing and resources of the facility. Timing and effective disinfection require a balance to maximize both without sacrificing quality.
Hospitals can cut that time in half by swapping out those disinfectants of the past with Avrika. Instead of wasting time switching between five different products to disinfect packaging, gloves, fabric, plastics, and industrial surfaces, custodial staff can use an Avrika wipe or spray on all material. Not to mention, there’s no wait time. Unlike the traditional disinfectants hospital staff currently have on hand, Avrika gets rid of viruses, germs, bacteria, and pathogens instantly.
What it Takes to Clean a Hospital Room
The tricky thing about cleaning hospitals is that every room has a different cleaning process. There are many factors that contribute to cleaning times, too, like the procedures performed in the room, the medical tools used, and even the amount of people who occupied the space. For example, cleaning up after one sprained ankle patient takes less time than disinfecting an operation room after invasive surgery.
During these COVID-ridden times, though, even simple procedures are taking a lot of time to perform. While we often use the terms “cleaning,” “disinfecting,” and “sterilizing” interchangeably, they are all three very different steps; and each step has its own long list of protocols.
Updating Your Cleaning Process with Avrika
When you clean something, you simply use water and detergents to remove all of the soil and debris from a surface. If a high level of biological debris is involved, as we often see in procedural areas, the cleaning process will include enzymatic products as well.
Cleaning always comes before disinfection, and the sanitation process is never truly complete unless you perform both. So to start, you would manually remove debris by scrubbing, dusting, washing, wiping, and the like. Use modern cleaning products like microfiber cloths, enzymatic products and ultrasonic technology to speed up the process. Avrika safely integrates with all cleaning products, so you can disinfect immediately after cleaning.
Another vital step of the cleaning process is removing the waste. Think garbage, disposable patient care items, and linens. In hospitals, linens are washed using a highly specific process. Soiled linens are transported using quality-controlled services and laundered in industrial facilities to maintain the integrity of the linens’ cleanliness. Adding Avrika to the laundering process is guaranteed to kill all microbes on the soiled linen so that it can safely be reused by staff or patients.
Most credible resources will recommend disinfecting and cleaning with a top-down approach. The process should begin at the highest surface and end with floors. In general, it is not recommended to disinfect floors, but to clean them. Evidence-based guidelines suggest no added benefit of disinfecting floors over cleaning them in the hospital.
In addition to standard between-patient cleaning, all hospital areas have routine deep and terminal cleaning schedules. Terminal cleaning involves a more thorough disinfection process of hospital rooms. It is more time-consuming and meticulous than standard cleaning. All furniture and other removable items are taken out and disinfected, in addition to the surfaces they cover. This happens more or less frequently depending on the hospital area and the necessity of deep cleaning.
For example, most operating rooms implement terminal cleaning at the end of each OR day to thoroughly clean the room. Terminal cleaning is often done before a patient with a latex allergy enters a clinical area. Terminal cleaning is also often a general practice to disinfect rooms that have been inhabited by confirmed or potential cases of Covid-19. It usually involves higher-level disinfectants, a greater surface area, and more recently, disinfection technology such as UV light, which can kill superbugs, and treatment-resistant organisms more effectively than solutions alone. Naturally, the process of terminal cleaning can take hours to days, depending on the size and type of area being cleaned.
Special Cases of Hospital Room Disinfection and Cleaning
Generally speaking, standard cleaning and disinfection processes should theoretically cover most known viruses and infections, including resistant pathogens like methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) or clostridium difficile (C-Dif), and new viruses like coronavirus. That being said, many patients and staff members are uncomfortable if additional measures aren’t taken to disinfect hospital rooms previously inhabited by patients with known infectious diseases.
Special care needs to be taken for cases where patients are in isolation, which is indeed the case for those that have particularly contagious or treatment-resistant infections. Similarly, in the operating rooms, where patient tissue is exposed, the patient is rendered more vulnerable to infection than they are with their skin and other tissue intact for obvious reasons.
This is why it takes much longer to clean an operating room or an isolation room than a standard hospital room.
Choice of Disinfectant
It may be tempting to assume that when it comes to disinfectants, the stronger, the better. But this is not so! Generally speaking, as the disinfectant becomes stronger, its toxicity increases. For example, bleach is an intermediate-level disinfectant. It should only be used in well-ventilated areas as it has corrosive properties to the eyes and skin and can irritate the respiratory system. Furthermore, it is potentially toxic to our cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, and respiratory systems, as well as to skin, liver, and kidneys.
The gold standard of disinfectant validation is the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approval. The EPA lists disinfectants according to the organisms they kill and deactivate. Most surfaces in hospital rooms are destroyed using low-level disinfectants that cover a broad range of microorganisms, including SARS-CoV-2.
The only example of a highly effective, broad coverage disinfectant is made by Avrika Life. It’s one of the newer products on the market that can kill bacterial, viral, and fungal organisms. Perhaps its most important quality is its ability to kill the SARS-CoV-2 virus at 99.9999% efficacy for 30 days.
What Hospitals Stand to Lose Without Avrika
Ability to Prevent Hospital-Acquired Infections
Hospitals are built to detect and treat infectious diseases. As such, within the walls of any hospital is a high concentration of contagions, probably more so than anywhere else. That puts a greater responsibility on hospitals to contain and treat infectious diseases. All too common is the occurrence of hospital-acquired infections (HAIs). This occurs when an infectious disease is ineffectively contained or surfaces inadequately disinfected. HAIs increase patient morbidity and mortality rates. It also raises healthcare costs and compromises patient faith in healthcare.
To incentivize hospitals to implement HAI prevention programs, The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has established a program that monitors HAIs and reduces or precludes reimbursement to hospitals for patients who get infected at the hospital.
The fear of HAIs has only been exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic, as many people avoid public places altogether, let alone healthcare facilities where infectious disease is more concentrated.
Therefore, cleaning and disinfecting hospital rooms with Avrika products is a critical step in preventing HAIs. A large component of preventing HAIs is educating all healthcare personnel on cleaning and disinfection, and not just that of environmental services. Patients wouldn’t want a provider to expedite their care at the expense of asepsis.
Hospitals and other healthcare facilities depend on accreditation to keep their doors open. Accrediting bodies like The Joint Commission are approved by the federal government to judge the soundness of hospital practices. The Joint Commission and other accrediting bodies use standards that are based on and exceed what is legally required. One of the most prominent keys to hospital accreditation is meeting infectious disease control standards.
To maintain accreditation, hospital rooms have to be cleaned using standardized practices that prevent the spread of infectious diseases. The process must be thorough, appropriate, effective, and efficient. As of today, Avrika is the only scientifically tested solution with proven results.
Effective Cleaning Policies
Creating policies that meet ethical, financial, and regulatory standards of practice is a key to a sound and resilient clinical practice. It is for this reason that most hospitals create disinfection and cleaning policies that surpass legal standards and accreditation mandates. Hospitals vary in standards and implementation of hospital room disinfection, but a few general principles apply.
Minimal cleaning and disinfection need to take place between every patient in a given hospital room. At the very least, surfaces utilized while the patient was in the hospital room need to be cleaned and disinfected: the bed, the mayo sand, the sink, the toilet, and counter space. Additionally, floors should be swept, mopped and dried before the next patient.
Cleaning should be done as soon as feasible after a patient has vacated the rooms. This can prevent the adhesion of organic materials or soil onto shared surfaces. Disinfection products are normally chosen based on the patient’s specific circumstances (e.g., if they had a highly infectious or treatment-resistant organism). The researchers at Avrika Life created their products with all patients in mind. Its ingredients cause no odor, are non-toxic and non-allergenic, and even contain anti-inflammatory properties.
That is completely unheard of with your leading hospital disinfectants; there’s always the added stress of preventing contamination of the disinfectant, and how long the disinfectant needs to be on the surface before it is fully effective.
The Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS) is a standardized survey sent to patients after a hospital stay to assess the quality of their care and overall experience. It is a comprehensive questionnaire covering multiple facets of the patient’s experience, including rapport and efficacy of clinical staff, communication among providers, and of course, cleanliness. The results of HCAHPS can affect hospital revenue in profound ways.
Hospital administrators are acutely aware of the importance of disinfection techniques and patient safety to improve patient experience and HCAHPS scores, particularly in the wake of Covid-19. Additionally, many hospitals took a large financial hit in 2020 as a substantial source of revenue was reduced where elective surgery was canceled.
The best way to improve the quality of patient experience, particularly when an infectious disease is such public concern, is to provide a safe, disinfected hospital space by using the highest quality products and the newest technology. Avrika fits that description.
Avrika is the Future
Considering how understandably remiss patients are to enter the hospital as we recover from the pandemic, hospitals must offer a safe place for patients to heal from their most acute states of illness and injury. Utilizing the most effective cleaning and disinfection resources is key to staff and patients’ well-being. As the market is flooded with new technology for disinfection, products like Avrika stand out in their ability to kill SARS-CoV-2 and other stubborn organisms and maintain the integrity of a disinfected surface over long periods.