Maintaining a safe and sanitary healthcare environment is critical to protecting patients, staff, and visitors from the spread of disease.
Terminal cleaning is an important part of this process and involves the thorough and systematic cleaning of a room or area after each patient’s stay — eliminating any microorganisms from the environment that could potentially cause harm to those entering it.
In this blog post, we will discuss what terminal cleaning is in a healthcare facility, what to look for in a terminal cleaning service, and how we approach terminal cleaning at 1 Stone Solutions.
What is Terminal Cleaning?
As mentioned, terminal cleaning is a deep cleaning process that takes place after a patient has left a healthcare facility and is the final step in a series of cleaning processes that ensure a healthcare facility remains safe and sanitary.
This specialized cleaning method involves decontamination to reduce the presence of microorganisms on surfaces and equipment, such as bedside tables, light switches, intravenous (IV) poles, and even mattresses.
It is critical that terminal cleaning is performed correctly to reduce the risk of infection and protect patients, staff, and visitors from being exposed to unnecessary health risks.
The Importance of Terminal Cleaning in the healthcare industry
Terminal cleaning is an essential step in protecting against the spread of infection in the healthcare industry.
Considering that some germs can live up to 5 months on dry surfaces, such as mattresses or door knobs, it is possible for patients to be infected with harmful bacteria and viruses that have been left behind in an area, even after all other cleaning processes are complete.
Couple that with the fact that many of the patients who enter healthcare facilities are already in a vulnerable state, and it’s easy to see why controlling the spread of infections is so important.
Additionally, terminal cleaning is a requirement of many healthcare industry accreditation organizations, including The Joint Commission and OSHA. Non-compliance with accrediting bodies like these and others could lead to hefty fines, the loss of license, or other serious penalties.
Differences between terminal cleaning and regular cleaning
While attention to detail when cleaning a hospital, urgent care, or similar medical facility is always important, terminal cleaning requires an even higher level of attention and is distinct from general healthcare cleaning in several ways.
For starters, the cleaning products that are used in terminal cleaning must be approved by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). This ensures that the products used are effective in killing germs and bacteria, yet safe for staff and visitors.
In addition to using EPA-approved products, terminal cleaning is also more comprehensive than general cleaning.
Not only do all surfaces need to be cleaned, but they must be disinfected to the point that all pathogens are eliminated.
This requires taking extra steps such as wiping down surfaces multiple times, using an appropriate dwell time, and wiping off any excess product.
Additionally, staff performing terminal cleaning must wear personal protective equipment (PPE) to protect themselves from contact with hazardous materials.
Finally, terminal cleaning must be documented with detailed records of the cleaning process. These records should include the date and time of the cleaning, what products were used, who performed the cleaning, and any other relevant information.
What to Look for in a Terminal Cleaning Service
When looking for a terminal cleaning service provider, it is important to make sure that the company has experience in the healthcare system.
They should be aware of the unique demands and requirements of infection control, as well as have an understanding of standard protocols like hand hygiene guidelines, as well as more advanced methods such as using UVC lighting.
The staff providing the service should be properly trained and familiar with providing comprehensive reporting that is essential for compliance and accuracy.
When meeting with potential providers, be sure to ask for references from past clients in order to get an idea of how effective their services have been.
How We Approach Terminal Cleaning
At 1 Stone, we take terminal cleaning seriously. We have stringent protocols in place to ensure tasks are completed with exceptional quality and uncompromising attention to detail.
Our team utilizes the latest techniques and technologies to create a superior final clean that consistently meets our strict standards.
We prioritize safety and provide thorough training on best practices when handling hazardous materials and/or chemicals so all employees can work confidently with environmental and health considerations in mind.
Additionally, all terminal cleaning tasks performed by our team are documented and reported in a timely manner to ensure complete transparency and compliance.
As you can see, terminal cleaning is a crucial aspect of maintaining a safe and sanitary environment in healthcare facilities.
It is important to choose a terminal cleaning service that understands the importance of this process and provides high-quality services.
At 1 Stone Solutions, we understand the critical role that terminal cleaning plays in healthcare facilities and approach it with a commitment to quality and attention to detail. Our team of experts will work with you to provide customized services that meet the unique needs of your facility.
Don’t take chances when it comes to the safety and well-being of your patients, staff, and visitors.
Contact us today to learn more about our terminal cleaning services.