|.The Great Disconnect | Why Beds Are So Dirty | Research|
Swab-Test Failure: According to research conducted by Dr. Edmond Hooker of Xavier University in early 2011, data concluded that conventional rayon-tipped swabs are not a good method for identifying bacterial contamination of mattresses and bed deck. See the Xavier University Study here >>
Cleaning Practices of Hospital Beds: Healthcare facilities typically disinfect the bed and mattress between each patient use, which is referred to as terminal cleaning. Usually, the mattress is cleaned by a manual wipe down with a rag or sponge soaked in a diluted quaternary or phenolic based disinfectant. Consider the following:
- The disinfectant may be ineffective if improperly diluted and might damage or crack the mattress surfaces.
- The disinfectant might be ineffective if contact-time with the surface is less than the time specified in the labeling (usually 10 minutes).
- Adequate disinfection is dependent upon the thoroughness of the person responsible for cleaning. Applying disinfectant to the area between the mattress and bed deck can be difficult and time-consuming. Improperly applied germicides will damage and rust bed decks prematurely mandating that the bed be taken out of service.
- Fluids and microbes will eventually enter the mattress where they cannot be effectively removed if the polyurethane coating on the mattress cover is compromised by a puncture, scratch, scuff, or wear. Mattress covers with the woven fabric outside and polyurethane coating on the inside are particularly difficult to disinfect.
Trinity Guardion’s research has unveiled three key industry findings:
- Current cleaners do not consistently relieve hospital beds of microorganisms because these cleaners were developed for hard, non-porous surfaces and do not kill all the bacteria dwelling in the recesses and cracks within the woven nylon or polyurethane mattress surfaces.
- The cleaning process of wiping the mattress might actually spread microorganisms to the bed deck and surrounding surfaces.
- The current method of auditing bed cleanliness using rayon-tipped swabs may fail to identify the presence of bacterial contamination.
Trinity Guardion has supported research to identify better methods for detecting the presence of bacteria on mattresses and bed decks.
To obtain advance notices of this research as it becomes available, contact us today.