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Dedicated cleaning staff shown to reduce C. difficile contamination in hospital rooms
Date:4/9/2013

n modestly improved the disinfection of high-touch surfaces over traditional cleaning practices (57 percent versus 67 percent). The use of the UV device further reduced the percentage of positive cultures, but C. difficile still was present in 35 percent of rooms. Ultimately, disinfection was dramatically improved with the addition of enhanced standard disinfection intervention, reducing positive cultures to 7 percent.

"Healthcare facilities are increasingly turning to automated room disinfection devices as a strategy to optimize environmental disinfection. With effective monitoring and feedback, motivated environmental services personnel can achieve results that rival or surpass many of the automated devices," said Curtis Donskey, MD, staff physician at Louis Stokes Cleveland Veterans Affair Medical Center and an author of the study.

The enhanced standard disinfection intervention included formation of a dedicated C. difficile disinfection team that used bleach wipes to disinfect high-touch surfaces. Establishing a dedicated team of highly-motivated housekeepers eliminated the problem of variability in housekeeper performance. Supervisory housekeeping staff and/or infection control personnel cleared C. difficile rooms granting an opportunity to directly observe individual housekeeper performance and provide immediate feedback. Notably, although use of the UV device was continued in the third intervention, it did not contribute to the effectiveness of the intervention (i.e., all negative cultures were negative both before and after operation of the UV device).

While the study highlights the potential for environmental services personnel to achieve excellent disinfection of C. difficile rooms, it does have several limitations. Researchers have not yet demonstrated if this intervention could be maintained long-term or if it would be effective in reducing C. difficile transmission and infectio
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Contact: Tamara Moore
tmoore@gymr.com
202-745-5114
Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America
Source:Eurekalert

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