Is Nipah Virus the Next Epidemic Crisis?

Nipah-Virus-Grey-Headed-Flying-Fox-Size

According to the CBC:

A rare virus spread by fruit bats, which can cause flu-like symptoms and brain damage, has killed 10 people in southern India, health officials said on Tuesday, with at least two more cases being monitored.

The virus was first detected in Malaysia in 1998, and India’s eastern state of West Bengal has suffered two outbreaks in the last decade, killing 50 people, the WHO has said.

There has been a another preivous outbreak in Bengladesh in 2004. It would be the third outbreak if confirmed.

Is there any risks in Canada?

The risk to Canadians is considered to be low as there are no species of fruit bats in Canada. However, people working with swine in Southeast Asia should be aware of the risk.

Mode of transmission of Nipah Virus

nipah virus

Public Health Canada states that:

The mechanism for the transmission of the virus from fruit-bats to animals is unknown, but may involve consumption of fruit contaminated with urine or saliva from infected bats. Transmission from animals to humans appears to occur by direct contact with contaminated tissues/body fluids of infected animals, especially pigs. Other infected animals, such as cats and dogs, may also be involved in spreading the virus. Human to human transmission is likely to occur by direct exposure to an infectious inoculum shed in the respiratory secretions of the infected individual, as well as by close physical interaction and frequent contact with the infected individual’s saliva.

Human-to-human transmission has been documented in several of the more recent outbreaks in Bangladesh, before which human-to-human transmission was considered to be a rare event

 

Sources:

Special Thanks: Remi Charlebois

http://www.cbc.ca/news/health/india-nipah-virus-death-toll-1.4672446

http://www.who.int/csr/disease/nipah/en/

http://www.inspection.gc.ca/animals/terrestrial-animals/diseases/immediately-notifiable/nipah-virus/fact-sheet/eng/1303439340158/1306100144027

https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/laboratory-biosafety-biosecurity/pathogen-safety-data-sheets-risk-assessment/nipah-virus.html

Mystery virus Nipah virus identified in Kerala, 9 dead, Central team on way

Grey-Headed Flying Fox

Towards a universal vaccine against flu

Influenza is a stubborn virus. Moreover, every year, the virus is changing and it’s another race against time to produce a new vaccine, often composed of several strains, which will be able to protect the most vulnerable population such as young children, the elderly and sick people.

inlfuenza

AN ENCOURAGING RESEARCH on INFLUENZA

According to the article by Radio-Canada:

At Laval University, Gary Kobinger’s team is testing a new influenza vaccine, which could provide better protection and long-term immunization. The formula incorporates much of the circulating influenza strains over the last 20 years.

A first clinical trial to test the safety of the vaccine ended a few months ago. According to the researchers, it shows that the product does not cause significant side effects.

The effectiveness of vaccines against influenza (the flu) is also limited especially when we guess wrong the strain that will be the most virulent that year!

THE IMPORTANCE OF HAND WASH

We are all at one point exposed to the flu virus. A good way of individual prevention is to put on your hat on and tie your coat. I am joking. On the other hand, regular hand washing before meals, after the toilet and even just when arriving at work or at home is really an effective way against the spread of the virus.

Regular hand soaps like Utopia or antibacterial soap like Utopia AB do the trick.

Did you know that our soaps do not contain any: methyisothiazolinone?

THE IMPORTANCE OF SURFACE DISINFECTION

Cleaning worker also plays a very important role in the winter period when it comes to disinfecting surfaces. Specialty products such as the Ali-Flex line of product offers many benefits:

 

DOWNLOAD MY FREE TRAINING ON INFLUENZA EPIDEMICS

I can give it in person at your workplace. Contact me glanthier@lalema.com

Source: http://ici.radio-canada.ca/nouvelle/1065664/vaccin-universel-grippe-influenza-guerir-personnes-agees-annee-h1n1-une-fois

Would we be ready to face an epidemic of bubonic plague?

Would we be ready to face an epidemic of bubonic plague?

In Madagascar, the government has recently imposed two days ago new emergency measures to stop a plague epidemic. It has been declared 24 dead since 1 month1.

black_death

What is the bubonic plague?

The plague is a bacterium Yersinia pestis, present in rodents as rats are often passed to humans by infected fleas.

According to Health Canada:

The incubation period of the plague varies from one to ten days.

Whatever the form, the illness always starts with flu-like symptoms (fever, chills, muscle aches, weakness and headaches) and can also cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and abdominal pain.

If left untreated, the mortality rate can reach 50%.

Bubonic plague smear demonstrating the presence of yersinia pest

SURFACES DISINFECTIONS

According to Health Canada2, in the event of a spill or contaminated surfaces:

Let the aerosols fall; wear protective clothing, carefully cover the spilled material with paper towels and apply 1% sodium hypochlorite from the periphery to the center; allow to act for a sufficient period (30 minutes) before cleaning

Plague is affected by many types of surface disinfectants such as:

MATERIAL SAFETY DATA SHEET: PATHOGENIC AGENTS, AND RISK ASSESSMENT

You are dealing with a bacterium, virus or other pathogen and you want to know more about it. Health Canada has launched an application and a website:

LAST CASE REPORTED IN CANADA

Cases of plague in humans are very rare in Canada; the last case was reported in 1939.

 

References:

1 http://www.lapresse.ca/international/afrique/201709/30/01-5138249-madagascar-durence-measures-to-tenter-delight-pidemic-epidemia.php

2 https://www.canada.ca/en/public_health/services/biosururity-biosurete-laboratory/technical-sheets-health-security-agents-pathogenes-risk-assessment/yers-in-the-health-technical-files -Security-ftss.html

How often should I clean this or that?

I develop maintenance program for my clients and the question that comes up most often is:
“How often should I clean this or that?”

clean

How often should I clean this?

Here is a non-exhaustive list of 16 surfaces to clean regularly at home.

Item Frequency Tips
1. Cellular phone

Daily Wipe with a microfiber glass cloth to remove any greasy substances and germs
2. Kitchen Counter

Daily Use a mild all purpose cleaner. When using a disinfectant cleaner, rinse the surface.
3. Dishwasher

Monthly Use specially designed capsules or a little bit of baking soda and vinegar and the trick is done.
4. Refrigerator

Quarterly To avoid the appearance of mold and other undesirable contents, empty and clean the shelves and containers.
5. Kitchen floor

Weekly Use a broom after each meal and a good damp mopping every week.
6. Carpets

Weekly Vacuuming carpets every week will even reduce allergies. Remove the dog and the baby before to do so!
7. Furniture

Monthly Vacuum furniture and fabrics every month and steam clean annually
8. Remote control or joystick

Weekly Remove the batteries, clean the remote control surface by rubbing the buttons and gaps.
9. Ceiling fans

Quarterly With an all purpose cleaner, wipe the blades. Do not forget to turn off the fan!
10. Window blinds

Quarterly Dust and clean batten by batten with soapy water and a soft cloth.
11. Toilet

Daily Brush daily and thoroughly clean once a week.
12. Towels

After some use After the shower or the bath, hang to dry and use a few times (3 or 4 times), then machine wash. Note: If you have teenagers, this thing may not work!
13. Shower curtain

Monthly Spray a bathroom cleaner to remove residual accumulated soaps and limescale.
14. Bed linen

Weekly Wash in warm water to remove bacteria and mites. Avoid eating in your bed!
15. Mattress

Biannual Vacuum the mattress twice a year to remove dead skin cells and mites.
16. Air filter

Monthly Changing air filters every month or as recommended by the manufacturer contributes to a healthy environment.

We have the tools to clean

At Lalema, we serve a large industrial and institutional clientele with an online catalog of more than 18000 products ! Come and have a look!

www.lalema.com

 

Source :

inspired from http://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/ss/slideshow-how-often-clean-this.

Photos are owned by me or from various talended photographs via unsplash.com

The complete guide to hospital cleaning

hospital-cleaning

For a long time, cleaning has been all about the look; fresh smell and the absence of stains or dirt were the criteria to determine that a place is clean. Today, these criteria are still generally accepted in environments such as offices and classrooms.

It’s common knowledge, however, that microbes (bacteria or viruses) invisible to the human eye represent a risk for spreading infections. Take the example of the influenza virus: it can survive for up to 48 hours on a hard surface!

Without cleaning and disinfection procedures or a quality check procedure, microbes can survive in hospital environments.

Three key elements have to be considered in order to perform an infective risk analysis:

  • Is the patient carrying a disease agent? Disease agents are classified based on their spreading capacity and their virulence. The choice of a disinfectant will be based on this.
  • Do the functional activities of a sector represent a risk of spreading infections from the environment? E.g.: food service, offices, Intensive Care, etc.
  • The intensity of contact is related to the traffic and the surfaces that are more likely to be touched. E.g.: bathroom fittings.

Infective Risk Analysis

Cleaning in hospitals allows reducing risks of infection among patients. This is not the only factor, of course: good personal hygiene habits such as washing hands and the use of protective equipment such as overalls, gloves, masks, or protective glasses are also important elements.

For this reason, interventions must be well coordinated in order to have a good surface maintenance plan. The manager of hygiene and cleanliness should therefore take into account:

  • The type of place associated to the level of risk
  • The tasks to perform
  • The required cleaning frequency

If well applied, a detailed estimate allows validating the cleaning performance.

The global approach is going to be determined by type of place:

  • Regular eradication (e.g.: operating rooms)
  • Keeping environmental effects as light as possible (e.g.: low infection risk such as individual office spaces)
  • Balance of microorganisms. This approach is based on the competition between good and bad microbes. The presence of good microbes guarantees less space for bad microbes to grow (e.g.: living environments)
  • Green cleaning. Approach that uses less toxic products
  • Review and improve arrangements and/or surfaces (during conception or renovation)

The Cleaning Staff: key to success

The hygiene and cleanliness staff represents a key element in the fight against infections in hospital environments. Often little valued, their role in the global strategy of surface cleaning is extremely important.

The hygiene that comes from the work of the cleaning staff requires a high performance level. In order to reach that, the executing staff and the managers need to master all the different elements representing this profession.

Cleaning products and equipment are undeniably crucial in order to ensure performance during the environment asepsis of any establishment. Therefore, it is important to associate the day-to-day actions of the cleaning staff with a range of products and equipment that favor the quality of their performance.

Since several years, partly due to the devotion and the involvement of many members in the healthcare system, we take into consideration new factors:

  • Provincial training
  • Establishment of an AEP hygiene and cleanliness in healthcare environments of 630 hours now offered by many school boards
  • Provincial day of hygiene and cleanliness
  • Etc.

Having said this, the hygiene and cleanliness staff deserves our deepest gratitude. Thank you so much!

Work Organization

How can proper work organization contribute to the cleanliness of a hospital? How to be in the right place with the right equipment? Here are the questions we are going to answer in this post of the Cleaning in Hospitals series.

Evaluation of production needs

First, we need to assess the needs in hygiene and cleanliness. In order to do this, a standard evaluation is preferable but it needs to be adjusted based on the type of place, units, and traffic.

It is during the evaluation of needs that the hygiene and cleanliness estimate (see Cleaning in Hospitals part 2) is going to be determined. All daily, weekly, monthly, and annual tasks have to be considered.

Usually, the results are presented by production yields (square meters/hour) or FTE (Full Time Equivalent).

How to reduce time waste

How to measure productivity in a context where an important aspect of the task is moving? Actually, hygiene and cleanliness departments are almost always in the basement, whereas most of their work happens on the floors!

We increase productivity by reducing traveling.

It is for this reason that the cleaning cart needs to be as complete as possible and the water sources or janitor’s closets well stocked with supplies (i.e.: paper products or waste bags), equipment, and sanitary products.

Moreover, it is important to remember that a good entrance carpet can greatly reduce dirt.

Have a successful day!

Here are a few hints on how to have a successful day:

  • Establish a sequence of actions to perform in a day/week/month
  • Define a sequential order of rooms
  • Integrate linked and periodical tasks (monthly)
  • Make sure to have time gaps to focus on periodical tasks (dusting of high surfaces, polishing, etc.)
  • Minimize traveling
  • Work by space and not by task
  • Distribute tasks equitably
  • One look is worth a thousand words: choose a colorful plan together with some graphics instead of a list of tasks on a word file!

Want to know more?

Look this free webinar from my collegue Remi:

Need help?

Don’t hesitate to call 514.645.2753 or subscribe to one of our training seminars. I really hope that you liked this post!

An enzyme to destroy biofilms

One can not stop the progress. The discovery of an enzyme capable of preventing the production of a biofilm, this polymeric protective layer produced by bacteria that prevents antibiotics and surface disinfectants from functioning well, could ultimately revolutionize the fight against nosocomial infections.

perturbation-biofilm

The team at the McGill University Health Center, which includes Dr. Donald C. Sheppard, has published a study in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS). Their hope is that this technology will be the subject of human clinical trials in Canada within 5 years and be used in hospitals within 10 years.

From the abstract:

We demonstrate that glycoside hydrolases derived from the opportunistic fungus Aspergillus fumigatus and Gram-negative bacterium Pseudomonas aeruginosa can be exploited to disrupt preformed fungal biofilms and reduce virulence.

What is a biofilm?

My colleague Rémi Charlebois described biofilms as follows:

Biofilms found on surfaces are often derived from a complex colony of microorganisms producing polymers that allow them to adhere better to the surface and facilitate colony life. In short, a biofilm is like a city for microbes. Man has learned to tame these biofilms and can use them to treat wastewater or produce certain molecules such as natural plastics. However, the presence of unwanted biofilms could be harmful and can lead to infections.

Biofilms are also found on the skin and medical devices. Thus, according to the article of Le Devoir:

Biofilms, a highly sticky matrix of proteins and sugar polymers made by bacteria to protect themselves, are attached to the skin, mucous membranes or the surface of biomedical materials, including catheters, tubing, heart valves and other prostheses Which become preferred entry points for infection.

In the same article, Dr. Sheppard quotes:

Biofilms are produced by molecules that defend against our immune system or against antibiotics with this shell that is 1000 times more resistant than the organisms that produce and proliferate in these biofilms.

An enzyme that acts as a “destructive machine” for biofilms

In short, the enzyme discovered was modified to destroy the biofilms instead of forming them. This is a new strategy that can reduce nosocomial infections in healthcare centers.

Watch this video about biofilms (25 minutes, french)

Sources:

http://www.ledevoir.com/societe/sante/501939/des-chercheurs-percent-le-secret-de-la-resistance-de-certaines-bacteries

http://www.lapresse.ca/sciences/medecine/201706/27/01-5111114-avancee-majeure-contre-les-infections-dans-les-hopitaux.php

What about Surface Disinfection against Poliovirus

Recently, my friend Rémi wrote on Twitter: “Why is it so long to get rid of Polio in the world? “, Did you know that there are barely 30 cases per year in the world! Only 3 countries in the world still have Polio cases. One of these 3 countries, Nigeria is on track to succeed with no cases reported since 1 year.

Credit CNN

Should we worry about the anti-vaccine movement?

In the report on CNN twitted by Rémi, the specialist mentions that the number of children not vaccinated in the United States is growing continuously. Will we have to wait for another epidemic?

Surface disinfection against poliovirus type 1

According to Health Canada, in its guideline – Safety and Efficacy Requirements for Disinfectants Assimilated to Hard Surface Drugs, a broad spectrum virus is defined as:

Broad-Spectrum Virucide: A disinfectant that is shown to be effective against a representative, envelope-free and hard-to-kill virus, which is also intended to inactivate other enveloped and envelope-free viruses (ie a product of which A “broad spectrum virucide” efficacy has been demonstrated).

Also according to Health Canada:

The incidence of poliomyelitis in Canada declined following the creation of vaccination programs in the 1950s. The last indigenous case of wild poliovirus infection in Canada dates back to 1977. In 1994, the World Health Organization Officially declared Canada free from wild poliovirus. The cases of paralytic poliomyelitis that have occurred in Canada since then have been associated with imported cases of wild poliovirus infection and the use of OPV.

According to the MSSS, in its guide “Disinfectants and disinfection in hygiene and sanitation: fundamental principles”

Among the viruses are those that are enveloped by a lipid layer and those that are not. These are called naked viruses. Paradoxically, this lipid-rich envelope is easily altered by chemicals, making wrapped viruses vulnerable. In contrast, naked viruses are “accustomed” to coping with outdoor conditions and are more resistant to disinfectants. Generally, if a disinfectant is active against naked viruses, such as polio, it is likely to be active against enveloped viruses, such as AIDS (HIV).

Quaternary or sodium hypochlorite disinfectants

Quaternary or sodium hypochlorite disinfectants with the “broad-spectrum virucidal” claim are effective against naked viruses such as polio.

Good Practices in Waste Management

Waste management can be a real headache especially if you work in a hospital or university! In Quebec, the legal and regulatory framework has evolved for more than 50 years and in 2017, several municipal, provincial and federal laws and regulations are in force. Let’s see how we can classify and demystify the different types of waste.

Waste Management

Credit photo Joseph Barrientos via unsplash

Good practices in waste management

To properly manage waste, it is imperative on one hand to be well aware of the characterization of your waste and on the other hand to know the regulations that apply to your situation.

Safe Handling

The safe handling of waste, whether at the time of its production, handling, storage or disposal, must be accomplished with appropriate protective measures for your own safety, safety of of others and protection of the environment.

Communication

Each department must also be informed of the way in which they dispose of the waste they produce in a safely manner. That’s why a good communication plan is also important!

Reduction at source

Take action by initiating gradual changes in how you manage your residual materials on the basis of the 3RV-E principle that promotes source reduction, reuse, recycling and valorise until residual materials must be eliminated.

  • Reducing at source is the fundamental principle of management to decrease the quantity of goods consumed, which necessarily decreases the amount of natural resources consumed.
  • Reuse is to give a second life to objects and use what others do not need anymore.
  • Recycling is the process of converting a residual material into a raw material for the manufacture of a new product
  • Valorisation is to give a second life to the products but in different ways, usually this is done by the biological way for example compost or energy like biofuels
  • Elimination when all efforts have been made in the 3RV and waste is finally disposed of.

Classification of waste by category

In industrial and institutional environments, waste is generally grouped into 7 categories:

  • General Waste
    • Non-recyclable waste with no reuse or recovery potential
  • Biomedical waste
    • Human anatomical waste
    • Animal anatomical wastes
    • Non-anatomical waste
      • Piercing, sharp or breakable objects that have been in contact with blood
      • A liquid or a biological tissue
      • Biological tissues, cell cultures, cultures of micro-organisms;
      • Live strain vaccines;
      • Containers of blood and blood-soaked equipment, etc.
  • Pharmaceutical waste
    • Hazardous pharmaceutical waste
      • Drug residues
      • Toxic expired drugs
      • Cytotoxic drugs
    • Non-hazardous pharmaceutical waste
      • Other drug residues
      • Non-hazardous expired drugs
  • Chemical waste
    • Chemicals from laboratories
      • Laboratory reagents
      • Laboratory solvents
    • Pressurized containers
  • Radioactive waste
    • Residues containing radioactive isotopes above standard
    • Syringes, reactors, lead cylinders (nuclear medicine)
  • Electronic waste (or with heavy metals)
    • Hardware
      • Computers
      • Screens
    • Cell phones
    • Battery
    • Articles containing mercury
      • Thermometers
      • Fluorescent or compact fluorescent bulbs
  • Recyclable waste
    • Paper
    • Cardboard
    • Plastic
    • Glass
    • Metal
    • Food and compostable residues
    • Organic waste
    • Construction debris
      • Brick
      • Concrete
      • Unpainted gypsum board
      • Metal
      • Wood

Legislative and regulatory framework for waste management in Quebec

  • Loi sur la qualité de l’environnement (chapitre Q-2)
  • Règlement sur l’enfouissement et l’incinération des matières résiduelles (c. Q-2, r. 19)
  • Règlement sur la santé et la sécurité du travail (chapitre S-2.1,r. 13)
  • Code de sécurité pour les travaux de construction (chapitre S-2.1,r. 4)
  • Règlement sur les déchets biomédicaux (c. Q-2, r. 12)
  • Code de la sécurité routière (chapitre C-24.2)
  • Règlement sur le transport des matières dangereuses (c. C-24.2, r. 43)
  • Règlement sur les matières dangereuses (c. Q-2, r. 32)
  • Règlement sur la récupération et la valorisation de produits par les entreprises (c. Q-2, r. 40.1)
  • Code de sécurité pour les travaux de construction – amiante (chapitre S-2.1, r. 4)
  • Loi sur la sûreté et la réglementation nucléaires (L.C. 1997, ch. 9)
  • Règlement général sur la sûreté et la réglementation nucléaires (DORS/2000-202)
  • Règlement sur la radioprotection (DORS/2000-203)
  • Règlement sur l’emballage et le transport des substances nucléaires (DORS/2000-208)
  • Règlement sur les substances nucléaires et les appareils à rayonnement (DORS/2000-207)

Learning, Understanding, Implementing, Enhancing

Have you enjoyed this post and would like to learn about this topic or about hygiene and sanitation in general? Great! Why not check out our training and consulting catalog now?

Source: Guide de gestion des déchets du réseau de la santé et des services sociaux

Inside an anthill near you

Several tasks accomplished by ants are similar to those of human professions such as farmer or breeder. Swiss researchers recently added a surprising task to this list: chemist!

david-higgins-10165-fourmi-1024x683

Credit David Higgins, Unsplash

Community life

We all know that anthills are full of ants. A population of a colony can easily reach several millions. Although they may be insects, food supply, waste management and infection control are, believe it or not, a major concern for the queen of an anthill.

The chemist ant

By mixing coniferous resin with formic acid (a venom secreted by ants to combat their enemies), the mixture doubles the antifungal efficacy of the resin alone. These ants are capable of improving the resistance of the colony to pathogens. This is the first time that we have observed, apart from humans, a species mixing different compounds in order to improve their effects.

Hard surface Disinfection in the human world

At Lalema, conifer resin and formic acid are not used to make our disinfectants. On the other hand, our formulas are developed and validated by real chemists in addition to being registered with the appropriate governmental bodies.

Our exclusive Certiklör technology allows our sodium hypochlorite products such as Ali-Flex RTU to have the following advantages over the competitor’s products :

  • Hypochlorite stabilized in solution (vs. Bleach)
  • Low odor (vs. Bleach at the same concentration)
  • Low corrosive potential (vs. Bleach at the same concentration)

Discover our Certiklör product line now or call our customer service at 514.645.2753 for more information.

Source: http://ici.radio-canada.ca/news/1024037/fourmis-chimie-infection-bacterie-antibiotique-etude

Thanks to my cousin Thierry L-D for finding the article about the ants!

How to make cleaning safer in 7 steps

According to ASSTSAS, falls and slips account for 18% of workers’ compensation costs in the province of Quebec. This is the third leading cause of workplace accidents in the health and social services sector and it includes all types of jobs.

Causes of workplace accidents

There are many other causes of workplace related accidents :

  • Fall and slide accidents
  • Muscle problems related to lift and flexion
  • Eye and skin lesions, often related to the handling of chemicals
  • Respiratory problems, often the result of working with chemicals and equipment
  • Accidental exposure to electrical hazards or biological hazards

Seven ways to make cleaning work safer

  1. Ensure periodic review of working methods and procedures
  2. Identify and evaluate “at risk” situations including load lifting, repetitive movements, exposure to chemicals, air quality, work organization
  3. Determine tasks requiring personal protective equipment such as gloves, goggles, masks, protective sleeves, etc.
  4. Wear non-slip shoes when stripping or laying floor finish
  5. Install “wet floor” safety panels when washing floors. Remove the panels when the floors are dry.
  6. Inspect the electrical wiring of your equipment regularly. Never pull the wire to disconnect a device.
  7. Consider the presence of any body fluid or blood as a real biological hazard and clean up only if you have received the proper training.

Sources:

https://asstsas.qc.ca/sites/default/files/publications/documents/Fiches/FT13_chutes_WEB.pdf

http://www.cleanlink.com/news/article/Seven-Ways-To-Make-Cleaning-Work-Safer–20393 (via Kim B., thanks!)

Biofilms: What you should know.

Biofilms are everywhere

Well hidden or sometimes visible, always disgusting, biofilms, as so well described by my colleague Rémi Charlebois, are defined as follows:

Biofilm is an aggregation of microbial cells, surrounded by a protective layer of extracellular polymeric matrix, which attaches itself to any surface found in the hospital environment and becomes a source of contamination. Formation of complex, multicellular communities by microorganisms is a natural phenomenon which helps bacteria or fungi to survive environmental stress such as cleaning and disinfection.

Warning: Graphic Content Ahead

A Biofilm looks like this:

Kitchen Drain

biofilms-drain-cuisine

Source: http://www.biofilm.montana.edu/content/household-biofilms

Sink strainer

biofilm-bouchon-evier

Source: http://www.biofilm.montana.edu/content/household-biofilms

Showerhead

biofilm-pommeau-douche

Source: http://www.biofilm.montana.edu/content/household-biofilms

Toilet Bowl

biofilm-cuve-toilette

Source: http://www.biofilm.montana.edu/content/household-biofilms

How to remove biofilms

Here are 3 methods to eliminate biofilm:

Replace equipment

This mehode is somewhat drastic, probably very expensive certainly mostly impractical. Some industries still proceed that way in 2016. I must say that in some cases it may be the only and best solution. For example pipe sections, filters, etc.

Strong acids and bases

Hydrochloric or Peracetic acids or strong bases such as caustic are sometimes used alternatively. However, corrosivity and danger of these chemicals can damage surfaces, individual protection equipment, storage and handling can also be a challenge . Furthermore, there is always the workplace hazards.

6 reasons why staff should be more involved

staff

When selecting or standardizing cleaning products, the involvement and participation of your staff  is essential. It is important to set up a participatory structure (mandatory user committee) for the acquisition of products and equipment. This would not only lead to a greater accountability from the users, but it will also bring a higher degree of satisfaction.

This structure would allow managers :

  1. To listen to users and to promote their full autonomy;
  2. To establish internal standards for any product. Such standards should truly reflect the needs of users;
  3. To review product stock to ensure they remain relevant;
  4. To specify, with users, technical specifications of products for purchasing according to the standards of the institution;
  5. To educate stakeholders on the content of standards and their use;
  6. To enhance internal resources in terms of products and equipment.

Participatory approach for the staff with the managers

Managers and users must be trained to properly select products and their many uses to avoid handling errors, improper dilution and to grab the security concepts associated. This is an essential prerequisite which is part of a participatory process that will generate a consensus from the janitors about the choice of cleaning products and initiate actions and training of new practices.

3 useful definitions in cleaning and disinfection

When it comes to cleanliness, some people are mixing technical terms leading to ambiguity. It is like mixing chemicals together: That is not a good idea! To keep it simple, we’ll just give three useful definitions.

Deteriorated surfaces

A deteriorated surface shows wear off sign often caused by time or misuse.

Deterioration is one of three elements of impairment of property, the others being functional obsolescence (or obsolescence) and economic obsolescence.

surfaces-vetustes

Safe surfaces

Safe surface means that it is safe to health. Such surface is healthy or good for health often because of risk management. In the food industry, this is why we often refer to it as food safety.
Safe is also synonymous to hygienic !

corridor-hopital-lalema

Disinfected surfaces

Disinfection is a voluntary momentary removal operation of certain bacteria (if it comes to “all germs” we refer more to sterilization), so as to stop or prevent infection or the risk of infection or superinfection by pathogenic or undesirable microorganisms or viruses.

For example:

  • To sanitize a surface eliminates 99.9% of microorganisms (This is a 1,000 X reduction)
  • To disinfect a surface removes 99.999% of microorganisms (This is a 100,000 X reduction)
  • To sterilize a surface or instrument removes 99.9999% of microorganisms (This is a 1,000,000 X reduction)

Obviously, “momentarily” is a key fator because the surface will be contaminated again as soon a a contaminant will enter in contact with the it. That’s why some disinfectants have a residual effect that prolongs the action of disinfectant for a certain time.

biofilm-1024x767

Sources: Larousse, Wikipedia, Linternaute

Welcome to RamblingsAboutDisinfection.com

ramble

It’s been a year and a half since we started www.ali-flex.com. From the beginning, the blog purpose was mainly to ramble about disinfection. Hence, the name of this new web site!

We know from many comments that you liked our old posts, so we brought them to this new website.

Before I forget,  www.ali-flex.com is more alive than ever, but will from now on be dedicated to the Ali-Flex, Chlorinated Disinfectant Cleaner. One of the main advantages of Ali-Flex RTU is to be a disinfectant as well as a cleaning product. Ali-Flex RTU is ready to use and does not require any dilution, which allows avoiding wrong manipulations or dilution while saving time. Ali-Flex uses exclusive Certiklör Technology.

The difference with our Certiklör stabilized hypochlorite?

The name says it all: stabilized hypochlorite!

Our multidisciplinary team of skilled scientists took 2 years to stabilize the hypochlorite solution. What is the secret? I’m afraid that’s like a little like the Caramilk’s secret! All I can say is that the ingredients that uses this technology have been carefully selected and expertly designed to give hypochlorite increased stability.
And who says stabilized hypochlorite, says better disinfection, less smell and increased cleaning!

If you wish to ramble about it, do not hesitate to share this website with your collegues.

How to reduce fatigue and nosocomial infection at the same time

anti-fatigue mat

Working long hours in an upright position rings a bell to you? Back pain, stress and fatigue are your daily meals? There may be a solution for you.

First: Reduce fatigue with an anti-fatigue mat

One of the features found in this type of carpet is the presence of an absorbent foam. Has it been developed by NASA? In fact, we only need to know if it works. If fatigue is reduced and comfort is improved, then risk of injury and error is reduced.

Second: a unique environment

Anti-fatigue mats are found in dry, wet or oily environement. It is however possible to have a dry environment where there is a risk of contamination.

Most ergonomic mats designed for a dry environment have no backing as shown by the following picture:

without backing
When the mat is placed in an environment where there is a risk of contamination, for example in a intensive care unit, a nurse workstation or an examination room, this can be a real problem. Indeed, how can one ensure the disinfection of such a foam pad, an absorbent material, is located under the carpet ?

A suitable carpet to reduce fatigue for the Healthcare Environment

The solution? Get a sealed carpet. This is exactly what was done with the Pure-Clean anti-fatigue mat.

with backing

Pure Clean carpets (also known previously under the name Pure Ergo-by Lalema) is an ergonomic mat designed specifically for critical areas in terms of infection control.

  • Non-porous carpet completely sealed sides
  • Resistant surface cuts and punctures
  • Very easy to clean and disinfect
  • Excellent anti-fatigue properties

Dilution is the solution

dilution

The dilution of chemical products in housekeeping is certainly one of the aspects where the lack of knowledge is most evident.

Dilution is often misunderstood

Effectively, there are unfortunately too many housekeepers that have the habit of adding a too large quantity of chemicals to their washing solution. Therefore, if they would come to a stop for an instant, in order to realize up to which point this may be harmful to their work, this bad habit would be lost very quickly.

We must indeed remember that cleaning chemical products are conceived to reach their maximum potential with a very precise volume of water.

Consequently, we must use a dilution measuring system that should be standardized for the whole working team.

Effects of under-dilution

With respect to Health and Safety, under dilution can cause:

  • Dermatitis problems
  • Respiratory tract problems
  • Toxic fumes may cause cancer, difficult to prove and difficult to be recognized by the CSST.

With respect to work efficiency and surfaces, under dilution can:

  • Damage surfaces, since an under-diluted alkaline product will make a dull effect, by opening the pores of the floor coverings and thus allowing the deposit of alkalis. Acids, on the contrary, close the pores of the floor coverings and also burn the surface.
  • Leave a film on the surface that will give a continuous streaky appearance and this film being greasy will facilitate the adherence of dirt.
  • Cause enormous rinse problems because it will create foam in the solution container, which anyway has no cleaning effect.
  • Disturb disinfection efficiency.
  • Result in a loss of efficiency, since a well-diluted product reduces the physical demand to perform a task and favors the mechanical action.

Effects of over-dilution

Over dilution can cause:

  • Result in no disinfection.
  • Result in loss of efficiency since an over-diluted product will increase the physical workload at the expense of the mechanical action.

The right dilution is always the best solution

The use of a dilution system does not have to be complicated or costly. Portable system such as Optimixx Portable Dilution System can be used as so.

gun

Expo Lalema 2015 : Its a rendezvous

expo-lalema

We are very proud to invite you to our 3rd edition of EXPO LALEMA. Last year was a frank success at that was because so many of you, dear clients, collaborators and friends showed up. Beware, we expect this year to be even better!

Ali-Flex product lines will be displayed

The whole Ali-Flex product line will be displayed and you will be meeting with our environmental hygiene specialist. Furthermore, exclusive announcements will be made.

Dedicated Partners

We are lucky to have such dedicated partners and always there for our clients and ourself. This year some of our most respected partners will join us. Rubbermaid, 3M, Kimberly Clark, Cascades, Bobrick, Comac, Eco II, Nacecare et Atlas Graham will be there to answer your questions and presenting you the way they rethink hygiene.

Expo Lalema : Its a rendezvous

This year we will be receiving you in the Canada pavilon on the Notre-Dame island. Many surprises await you!

Don’t forget to save the date, you won’t regret it!

We will be waiting for you on April 30th 2015. Doors will open at 11h00 at 1, Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, Pavillon du Canada Toundra room.

You can subscribe via e-mail (mlandry@lalema.com) or directly on our website site at : www.lalema.com.

We look forward to seeing you there,

Why choose a Ready-to-use Bleach based Cleaner-Disinfectant?

ready-to-use-cleaner-disinfectant-nursing

In the actual market, you can find many cleaner-disinfectants. When it comes to consumer products, you’ll find a lot of brand, most of them are ready to use. It means you do not have to dilute the product and use it as is to disinfect. For industrial and institutionnal use, most of cleaner-disinfectants are concentrated if not ultra-concentrated. In that case, why choose a ready-to-use Bleach based Cleaner-Disinfectant for institutionnal use?

Main benefit of a low-foam concentrated product

Let’s talk about a product like Ali-Flex LF, a product like this one offers a high concentration for general disinfection in hospitals. On a day to day basis, with the right dilution system, the surfactants contained in ALI-FLEX LF increase the wetting power of this chlorinated disinfectant and contribute to degrease and remove dirt from hard non porous surfaces such as countertops, walls, floors, toilets, commode chairs, etc.

Main benefit of a ready-to-use chlorinated disinfectant cleaner

When it comes to infection control, one important aspect is to reduce the risk. We know that dilution systems can sometimes be flawed and not consistant with delivery concentration. Therefore, it is crucial to obtain a consistant known concentration. That is exactly what Ali-Flex RTU can provide: a factory consistant concentration of 6000 PPM (when packaged) with a validated shelf-life.

Of course it may generate more plastic in the environnement. Recycling may then be on option to consider. At the same time, when patient’s lifes are at risk, all factors that can reduce the risk is of important value.

What are you using in your facility?

Tell us what kind of product you are using. Are you in control? Are you facing problems when it comes to stop eclosion? Surely we can help you! Let’s talk!

Beware, microbes can survive in hospital environment

microbes

For a long time, cleaning has been all about the look; fresh smell and the absence of stains or dirt were the criteria to determine that a place is clean. Today, these criteria are still generally accepted in environments such as offices and classrooms.

It’s common knowledge, however, that microbes (bacteria or viruses) invisible to the human eye represent a risk for spreading infections. Take the example of the influenza virus: it can survive for up to 48 hours on a hard surface!

Without cleaning and disinfection procedures or a quality check procedure, microbes can survive in hospital environment.

Three key elements have to be considered in order to perform an infective risk analysis:

  • Is the patient carrying a disease agent? Disease agents are classified based on their spreading capacity and their virulence. The choice of a disinfectant will be based on this.
  • Do the functional activities of a sector represent a risk of spreading infections from the environment? E.g.: food service, offices, Intensive Care, etc.
  • The intensity of contact is related to the traffic and the surfaces that are more likely to be touched. E.g.: bathroom fittings.

Have you already performed an infective risk analysis? We can help, make sure to visit our unique offer for Diagnostic Analysis of Hospital Housekeeping Service. My next post is going to explain how cleaning allows reducing risks of infection among patients.

A brief history of the Influenza

Emergency_hospital_during_Influenza_epidemic_Camp_Funston_Kansas_-_NCP_1603

Historical picture of the 1918 Spanish flu at Camp Funston, Kansas, showing the many ill patients. Source: WikiCommon

 

I would like to talk to you about the Influenza. My mother always told me: “Son, a small flu lasts a week and a big one lasts 7 days.” and she was right. Influenza is a respiratory infection that also spreads very easily. It is caused by the influenza virus.

The origin of the flu

Influenza hit human beings in China as early as around -2500 B.C. With birds, the virus goes back more than 8000 years ago.

Hippocrates had clearly described Influenza

In -2400, the writings of Hippocrates clearly describe the symptoms of the flu. And since then, history is full of influenza pandemics description. However, before 1850, the data are sometimes difficult to analyze because the symptoms of flu are similar to other diseases such as diphtheria, bubonic plague, typhoid fever and others.

Major known influenza pandemics

Major known flu pandemics
Pandemic Date Death Subtype involved Severity Index
Asian Flu (Russia) 1889–1890 1 million H2N2 ? ?
Spanish Flu 1918–1920 30 à 100 millions H1N1 5
Asian Flu 1957–1958 1 à 1,5 millions H2N2 2
Hong Kong Flu 1968–1969 0,75 à 1 million H3N2 2
A (H1N1) Flu 2009–2010 18 138 H1N1

Discovery of the virus

It was long thought that influenza was caused by bacteria. In 1931, the virus was identified in pigs and two years later, in 1933, humans from levy on the throat of a researcher contaminated with the flu.

Discovery of the vaccine

In 1935, we managed to “grow” the virus in embryonated chicken eggs. The first clinical trials between 1936 and 1938 are inconclusive. In 1944, with support from the US Army, we obtained the first effective vaccine based on influenza virus. Research has continued since.

The vaccine in Quebec for 2014-2015 is available since November

The injectable vaccine against influenza 2014-2015 offered in the program framework contains the following three strains:

  • A / California / 7/2009 (H1N1)
  • A / Texas / 50/2012 (H3N2)
  • B / Massachusetts / 2/2012
  • The intranasal vaccine contains four strains or B / Brisbane / 60/2008 in addition to the same three strains contained in the vaccine injection.

Even if you have been vaccinated against the flu last year, you still need to receive it this year. Indeed, antibody levels fall about 6 months after vaccination against influenza, particularly in people whose immune system is weakened.

The index of influenza activity in Quebec for the week of 7 to 13 December 2014 (CDC 14-50) is HIGH tends UPWARD.

f23239b08c69e43c4a2aa6999e06ee5a

Preventive measure against the flu

If we can not escape it, there is still prevention methods:

  • It maintains a proper hygiene program (particularly hand washing).
  • It is vaccinated.
  • This ensures clean and disinfect surfaces regularly.

For more info on how to fight a flu epidemic (or pandemic if it degenerates there), see this presentation (in french):

sources:
http://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grippe
http://www.msss.gouv.qc.ca/sujets/prob_sante/influenza/index.php?accueil

Clorox bleach wipes destroy C. difficile in five minutes!

 

2013-01-29-CloroxBot

10% of admitted patient will contract an HAI

The ministry of Health and Social Services estimates that in Quebec, between 80 000 and 90 000 hospitalized patients will present a nosocomial infection, which represents 10% of admitted patients. In addition to the measures suggested in the action plan on prevention and control of nosocomial infections 2010-2015, healthcare centers can count on an effective cleaning product: Clorox bleach disinfecting wipes.

Clorox Bleach Wipes are pre-humidified

Since March 2011, Clorox bleach wipes are effective for killing the spores of C. difficile after a contact time of 5 minutes. The wipes are pre-humidified with a stable solution of sodium hypochlorite diluted at 1:10, that is the recommended concentration by the American Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). They are also homologated for the destruction of 31 other pathogen agents in one minute.

clorox-bleach-disinfecting-wipes

UV disinfection how does it works?

r2d2 UV disinfection

Since 1877, scientists know the microorganisms can be eliminated by UV rays. Nearly 50 years later, however, they discovered the specific type of frequency that was the most damaging.

In the 1950s, researchers knew that UV rays penetrate cells and damage the nucleic acids or deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) and ribonucleic acid (RNA). This led to the commercial development of multiple UV disinfection devices, primarily with mercury vapor, which produces UV having the most effective frequency for the destruction of microorganisms. Today, UV disinfection devices use xenon UV rays.

UV disinfection is used in many hospitals

UV disinfection devices are used in hospitals such the ones in Vancouver and Hamilton. It is the natural evolution of the UV disinfection, to which are added the cleaning and disinfecting surface and a good dose of prevention.

Combined with touchless systems for bathrooms and public spaces, hospitals are able to reduce the number of surfaces to be disinfected to prevent nosocomial infections.

In any case, these robots do not replace the housekeeping staff but add a small sector futuristic air … don’t you see a family resemblance with this R2-D2 designed by Agent-Spiff?

We have UV solutions for you

Not to disinfect but to perform quality control. Visit our web site to find out more about it

Ebola, how does it spread?

top-2014-ebola-virus

The Ebola Virus

Ebola is a virus. There is currently no vaccine or treatment. It causes severe disease, causing serious symptoms including vomiting and bleeding. The mortality rate can reach 90%. Primary infection comes from a contact with an infected animal and it can spread quickly.

How can you get infected by Ebola?

By coming into contact with following bodily fluids such as blood, urine, feces and vomit. Of by one of the following means: by contact with a dead victim, by ingestion of infected animal meat or by having sexual intercourse with an infected person.

What are the symptoms of Ebola?

The symptoms of Ebola are fever, headache, nausea and fatigue. It may also include bleeding from nose, mouth or eyes, coughing, diarrhea or vomiting with the possible presence of blood.

How to prevent ebola transmission

The risk of transmission of the Ebola virus in Canada is very low. However, certain precautions must be taken. The Public Health Agency of Canada also recommends that travelers avoid all nonessential travel to Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone.

There is a risk only if you have been in contact with sick people. In such case, if you experience symptoms, call 8-1-1 (Quebec) and inform them of your discomfort. You will be directed to the healthcare center care that can help you.

What to do to prevent the spread of Ebola virus

The Ministère de la Santé et des Services sociaux in collaboration with the Institut nationale de santé publique du Québec has issued recommendations in case of an outbreak. It is important that each healthcare center that can receive a potentially infectious patient put in place appropriate precautionary measures. Thus, it is important to have the required equipment for this type of care.

Robots to destroy Ebola?

xenex-robots

Credit photo: Xenex website

Robots are soldiers in a war againt HAI’s

Two Canadian hospitals have recently acquired a machine enabling surface disinfection in health institutions.

The Juravinksi hospital in Hamilton has started a year trial of a robot that costs 95 000 $ that burns the bacteria with UV rays: the Xenex Robot System. The general hospital of Vancouver has also started a trial of a UV robot that is 1.65 meters tall, called the Tru-D Smart UVC, working with UV rays as well. The effectiveness of these machines relies on the properties of the UV rays, or rather on the xenon UV rays, to sterilize and kill microscopic contaminants.

Ebola outbreak

Recently, with the Ebola Outbreak, the Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas, where 42-year-old Thomas Eric Duncan, the first person to be diagnosed with Ebola in the US, was being treated, also uses such device. But was it enough? See this other blog post from my collegue: The Dallas case rises a question: Should protocols for infection control be revised?

What about your hospital?

The goal of these robots is not to replace the cleaning staff, nor the products employed for critical disinfections, but rather to complete their work, and to avoid that a single microscopic bacteria could take the life of a person whose immune system is weak.

Is your plan ready? Is your staff trained well enough? Do you have a stabilized chlorinated cleaner disinfectant in stock?

Do not miss our next post, which is going to explain how UV disinfection works!

More about Ebola Virus

There are a lot of ramblings about Ebola in 2014 on the web, you will find these articles interesting:

Ebola, How to disinfect surfaces

Ebola virus, Are we Ready?

Cleaning in Hospitals (part 2)

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source: http://tvanouvelles.ca/lcn/infos/lemonde/archives/2014/10/20141007-174935.html

A Brief History of Bleach

Javel Underground, Paris, France (Bleach)

JAVEL Undergroud Station in Paris. Photo courtesy of Google Street View

Bleach has been studied for the first time by a French chemist named Claude Louis Berthollet in 1775. His factory was based in Paris in the district of… Javel! That is why the French are calling it: Eau de Javel (Javel Water).

At first, bleach was used for laundry and as a fade. From 1820, a pharmacist named Antoine Germain Labarraque studied more deeply its disinfecting properties . In the XIX Century, it was commonly used as a disinfectant and water treatment. The NASA used bleach during the Apollo program to disinfect the Apollo XI rocket after its return, in order to avoid contaminating Earth with potential dangerous viruses!

What is Bleach?

Bleach is composed of sodium hypochlorite (NaClO). For chemistry fans, its chemical formula is as follows:

Cl2 + 2 NaOH → NaCl + NaClO + H2O.

For those who don’t like chemistry, well… the formula is the same!

What’s new?

Nowadays, bleach is still used as a disinfectant. Stabilized formulas enable to combine the disinfecting ability of chlorine together with the cleaning ability of surfactants.

Other references: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bleach

We have cleaning solution for you

Visit our web site at www.lalema.com. You will find what you need to distinfect with sodium hypochlorite solution. We are also he owner of Certiklor Technology

How to obtain a more effective disinfection with Certiklör?

What is Certiklör? The name of a new chemical? A new government certification?

None of the above! Simply put, Certiklör technology is the insurance for you, your patients and all Canadians to achieve a better, more efficient and high quality disinfection. Certiklör is a proprietary technology developed by Lalema for you. This technology ensures that you have in the bottle, an effective stabilized hypochlorite, and here to stay!

A Wednesday Tale: Romans used to say: Automate your restrooms

roman_legionaire_restrooms

This is not really that the Romans would tell each other after a rough battle against the Gallic, but nowadays the battle is never ending and merciless against the irreducible microbes!

Certain bacteria are good for us

And yet, most of bacteria are good for us, simply think of yoghurts or biological products and you’ll see that not all bacteria must be eliminated!

In certain environments such as at home, it’s not necessary to eradicate all microbial activity on the surfaces. It’s still better do it in an operating room though!

Let’s talk about public restrooms

Whether it is in a clinic, at school, in a shopping mall, a restaurant, or even at the office, certain people are a bit reluctant to touch surfaces. And you?

Conceive the ideal restroom

In this room, you will find accessories that have been conceived based on 3 fundamental criteria:

  • Infection spread risk reduction
  • Consumption reduction (environment protection)
  • Comfort and well-being of the user

Among these items, you’ll find:

The best way to discover the ideal restrooms is to visit our web site at www.lalema.com. 

We hope that you found this post informative and fun. Subscribe to this blog! You just need to write your e-mail address below. Thank you.

Cleaning in Hospitals (part 4)

Work_Organization

How can proper work organization contribute to the cleanliness of a hospital? How to be in the right place with the right equipment? Here are the questions we are going to answer in this post of the Cleaning in Hospitals series.

Evaluation of production needs

First, we need to assess the needs in hygiene and cleanliness. In order to do this, a standard evaluation is preferable but it needs to be adjusted based on the type of place, units, and traffic.

It is during the evaluation of needs that the hygiene and cleanliness estimate (see Cleaning in Hospitals part 2) is going to be determined. All daily, weekly, monthly, and annual tasks have to be considered.

Usually, the results are presented by production yields (square meters/hour) or FTE (Full Time Equivalent).

How to reduce time waste

How to measure productivity in a context where an important aspect of the task is moving? Actually, hygiene and cleanliness departments are almost always in the basement, whereas most of their work happens on the floors!

We increase productivity by reducing traveling.

It is for this reason that the cleaning cart needs to be as complete as possible and the water sources or janitor’s closets well stocked with supplies (i.e.: paper products or waste bags), equipment, and sanitary products.
Moreover, it is important to remember that a good entrance carpet can greatly reduce dirt.

Have a successful day!

Here are a few hints on how to have a successful day:

  • Establish a sequence of actions to perform in a day/week/month
  • Define a sequential order of rooms
  • Integrate linked and periodical tasks (monthly)
  • Make sure to have time gaps to focus on periodical tasks (dusting of high surfaces, polishing, etc.)
  • Minimize traveling
  • Work by space and not by task
  • Distribute tasks equitably
  • One look is worth a thousand words: choose a colorful plan together with some graphics instead of a list of tasks on a word file!

This is all for this series of posts on Cleaning in Hospitals! Don’t forget that we’re always here to help, don’t hesitate to book an appointment by calling 514.645.2753 or subscribe to one of our training seminars. I really hope that you liked this serie of posts!

 

References:
Hygiène et salubrité en milieux de soins – Démarche pour le développement de stratégies d’entretien des surfaces, MSSS, 2010, 52 pages.

Cleaning in Hospitals (part 3)

cleaning-hospital-staff

The hygiene and cleanliness staff represents a key element in the fight against infections in hospital environments. Often little valued, their role in the global strategy of surface cleaning is extremely important.

The hygiene that comes from the work of the cleaning staff requires a high performance level. In order to reach that, the executing staff and the managers need to master all the different elements representing this profession.

Cleaning products and equipment are undeniably crucial in order to ensure performance during the environment asepsis of any establishment. Therefore, it is important to associate the day-to-day actions of the cleaning staff with a range of products and equipment that favor the quality of their performance.

Since several years, partly due to the devotion and the involvement of many members in the healthcare system, we take into consideration new factors:

  • Provincial training
  • Establishment of an AEP hygiene and cleanliness in healthcare environments of 630 hours now offered by many school boards
  • Provincial day of hygiene and cleanliness
  • Etc.

Having said this, the hygiene and cleanliness staff deserves our deepest gratitude. Thank you so much!

The next post is going to talk more in detail about one aspect of their profession: work organization.

Don’t miss any posts about this series, subscribe to this blog!

References:

Hygiène et salubrité en milieux de soins – Démarche pour le développement de stratégies d’entretien des surfaces, MSSS, 2010, 52 pages.

Cleaning in Hospitals (part 2)

cleaning-hospitals

Cleaning in hospitals allows reducing risks of infection among patients. This is not the only factor, of course: good personal hygiene habits such as washing hands and the use of protective equipment such as overalls, gloves, masks, or protective glasses are also important elements.

For this reason, interventions must be well coordinated in order to have a good surface maintenance plan. The manager of hygiene and cleanliness should therefore take into account:

  • The type of place associated to the level of risk
  • The tasks to perform
  • The required cleaning frequency

If well applied, a detailed estimate allows validating the cleaning performance.

 

The global approach is going to be determined by type of place:

  • Regular eradication (e.g.: operating rooms)
  • Keeping environmental effects as light as possible (e.g.: low infection risk such as individual office spaces)
  • Balance of microorganisms. This approach is based on the competition between good and bad microbes. The presence of good microbes guarantees less space for bad microbes to grow (e.g.: living environments)
  • Green cleaning. Approach that uses less toxic products
  • Review and improve arrangements and/or surfaces (during conception or renovation)

The next post of this series is going to talk about another key factor: the hygiene and cleanliness staff.

References:

Le nettoyage dans les hôpitaux du 21e siècle by Dr. Stephanie J. Dancer, Medical, Microbiology, Hairmyres Hospital, UK appeared on the magazine Le Nettoyage professionnel, July/August 2012.

Hygiène et salubrité en milieux de soins – Démarche pour le développement de stratégies d’entretien des surfaces, MSSS, 2010, 52 pages.

Cleaning in Hospitals (part 1)

hospital-cleaning

For a long time, cleaning has been all about the look; fresh smell and the absence of stains or dirt were the criteria to determine that a place is clean. Today, these criteria are still generally accepted in environments such as offices and classrooms.

It’s common knowledge, however, that microbes (bacteria or viruses) invisible to the human eye represent a risk for spreading infections. Take the example of the influenza virus: it can survive for up to 48 hours on a hard surface!

Without cleaning and disinfection procedures or a quality check procedure, microbes can survive in hospital environments.

Three key elements have to be considered in order to perform an infective risk analysis:

  • Is the patient carrying a disease agent? Disease agents are classified based on their spreading capacity and their virulence. The choice of a disinfectant will be based on this.
  • Do the functional activities of a sector represent a risk of spreading infections from the environment? E.g.: food service, offices, Intensive Care, etc.
  • The intensity of contact is related to the traffic and the surfaces that are more likely to be touched. E.g.: bathroom fittings.

Have you already performed an infective risk analysis? The next post is going to explain how cleaning allows reducing risks of infection among patients.

Don’t miss any posts about this series, subscribe to this blog! You just need to write your e-mail address, it’s that easy!

Subscribe to Blog via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

References:

Le nettoyage dans les hôpitaux du 21e siècle by Dr. Stephanie J. Dancer, Medical, Microbiology, Hairmyres Hospital, UK appeared on the magazine Le Nettoyage professionnel, July/August 2012.

Hygiène et salubrité en milieux de soins – Démarche pour le développement de stratégies d’entretien des surfaces, MSSS, 2010, 52 pages.