Explore - Summer 2013 - (Page 5)
Welcome to the inaugural edition
of EXPLORE. This quarterly publication
is replacing the Phoenix newsletter.
After much discussion and review of
survey data, the AHE Board decided
on a new look and direction. Inside
this first edition you will find articles
and information on the cleaning and
disinfection of surfaces and employee
Mike Bailey, CHESP
engagement strategies aimed at increasing HCAHPS scores. Future issues will focus on one or two topics,
and information will be presented to enhance your knowledge and
Cleaning and surface disinfection has always been the top
priority for EVS professionals. As we actively participate in hand
hygiene, customer service, safety programs, and other initiatives
at our facilities, we remain focused on the role of the environment
in patient safety, and positive outcomes for our customers. The
relationship between these programs is evident. Each has the ability to influence the other. Good cleaning and surface disinfection
with proper hand hygiene should lead to improved patient safety
(fewer HAIs) and increased HCAHPS scores. Conversely, poor hand
hygiene and safety programs would likely lead to increased HAIs
and lower HCAHPS scores.
According to the CDC, there are several factors influencing the
efficacy of disinfectants and the job they do when applied to surfaces. First, the number and location of the microbes will influence
the effectiveness of the disinfectant. Disinfectants need to come
in direct contact with microbes to be effective. Large numbers
of microbes hiding in cracks and crevices will increase not only
the cleaning time but the time needed to destroy the masses of
microbes. Physical cleaning should be performed prior to disinfecting heavily soiled surfaces.
A second factor is the natural resistance of microbes to germicides. Bacterial spores are tougher to eradicate than other
micro-organisms. Proper concentration is also a factor in a disinfectant’s ability to perform as indicated, along with temperature,
pH, humidity, and water hardness/softness. Finally, dwell time or
contact time will influence the effectiveness of the disinfectant.
These factors must be considered as we develop cleaning and
disinfecting programs for our facilities.
Take this opportunity to EXPLORE
the information in this issue, and
feel free to send feedback to me
or any of the AHE staff. We are
here to serve you.
Fortunately, we now have multiple new tools available to us
in addition to the traditional ones. We have hydrogen-peroxide
based disinfectants that require less dwell time and are safe to
use. We have monitoring technologies such as ATP and fluorescent marking systems that give quicker feedback than traditional
cultures or simple observation. We have disinfecting technologies with UV-C and accelerated hydrogen peroxide units that
provide a more thorough kill and enhance the normal cleaning
and disinfecting process for EVS. In addition, there are multiple
management programs available that help with staffing, assignments, training, scheduling, and follow up. How these new technologies fit into EVS programs should be points of discussion
and consideration for all EVS leaders.
Take this opportunity to EXPLORE the information in this issue,
and feel free to send feedback to me or any of the AHE staff. We
are here to serve you.
Register now for
Assessing Your Facility’s Risk for C. Diff.
Free webinar for AHE members
Date: Thursday, August 8, 2013
Time: 11 a.m. CT
Duration: 60 minutes
AHE 2013 President
Director, Environmental Services
Greenville Health System,
About AHE: AHE is the professional organization of choice for 2,000 directors and managers caring for the patient and resident
care environment across all care settings. AHE represents, defines, and advances the professionals responsible for care of the
healthcare environment to ensure quality outcomes and healthy communities.
· Mission: To ensure all healthcare environments contribute to quality outcomes and healthy communities.
· Vision: To be the global authority on caring for the healthcare environment.
www.ahe.org I EXPLORE I Summer 2013 5
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Explore - Summer 2013
Managing the Engagement Driver
The Crucial Role of the Environment
HCAHPS: Ways to Improve on the Environment Question
AHE News & Updates
Explore - Summer 2013