What would everything else in your hospital look like if it was cleaned on the same schedule as the privacy curtains?
The standard of cleaning curtains when “visibly soiled” and only after the discharge of cautionary patients ensures no certain cleaning frequency; and leaves more than half of the curtains in a hospital with no cleaning opportunity at all.
VRE Can Survive 80 Days on Polyester
According to CDC reports, in the United States 205 people die each day with at least one hospital-acquired infection. The total comes to about 75,000 people each year.
“Presently more people die with a hospital-acquired infection than the total of breast cancer, AIDS and car accidents combined.” —Dr. Betsey McCaughey, founder of the Committee to Reduce Infectious Deaths
Hospitals have developed many new measures to promote cleaner and safer patient environments. One of the last standout causes for concern remains soft surface sanitization. Fabrics provide unique challenges and a perfect microbial environment containing a porous surface that retains moisture and enables protection from light sources. Unlike everything else in the patient environment, privacy curtains typically have no fixed cleaning schedule or measures that inhibit contamination from hand transfers between patients, visitors and staff.
95% of curtains tested in patient areas hosted colonies of HAI related microbes, according to a clinical study published by the American Journal of Infection Control.
- Vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus (VRE)
- Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA)
- Clostridium difficile (C.diff)
- Gram-negative bacteria (Associated with Surgical Infections)
92% of the same curtains became re-contaminated within one week of traditional laundering. The results show that not only can HAIs survive on privacy curtains, but they can reproduce rapidly in the patient care environment.