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Encompass Group, LLC Announces Ken Tyler, VP Government Operations, Awarded Department of Veterans Affairs 2018 Lifetime Achievement Award.
The efforts of the FDA and the Hospital Bed Safety Workgroup have culminated in FDA's release of Hospital Bed System Dimensional and Assessment Guidance to Reduce Entrapment. This guidance provides recommendations for manufacturers of new hospital beds and for facilities with existing beds (including hospitals, nursing homes, and private residences).
Safety concerns and recommendations to help health care providers, health care facility staff, and caregivers ensure hospital bed mattress covers are safe for use in health care settings.
This Guideline applies to seating, tables, carts, storage and other furniture products as used in healthcare patient care. It also applies to furniture intended for use outside of patient care areas in healthcare environments as furniture is often used interchangeably between patient care and non-patient care areas.
In 2013, the FDA issued a Safety Communication warning that damaged mattress covers pose a risk of cross-contamination and patient infection, and recommended regular inspections of patient mattresses for any visible signs of damage such as tears, cuts, punctures, abrasions or staining. Despite this warning, there may be reasons why damaged mattresses continue to circulate in healthcare facilities.
An overview of three main areas of development where manufacturers and distributors of health care linens are concentrating their efforts. These were all identified as important factors in addressing the needs of the aging population, and work is being done throughout the industry to strive to address these developing needs.
Visiting a potential health care laundry is a must and should include relevant representatives from environmental services and infection prevention. During the visit, focus the evaluation on the Three Ps: the plant, the personnel, and the process.
During a session titled “Environmental Services, Infection Prevention, and Health Care Laundry: Partners in Textile Hygiene,” speakers detailed how St. Mary’s (a 391-licensed bed, not-for-profit hospital) partnered with its laundry provider to enhance management practices.
Laundry processing of health care linens has experienced a significant shift. From the management of self-operated onsite laundry operations to the use of outsourced external central laundries, hospitals are evaluating the cost efficiencies of both in-house and outsourced processes. To do this, they must weigh the value of each while keeping the balance of effective textile care processing as the key fulcrum point in making their decision.
Fabrics play an important role in the transmission of bacteria. They have been proven to act as “fomites” – or where organisms can grow and multiply. And, even though soft surfaces constitute a significant portion of the patient’s immediate environment, they are often overlooked in everyday environmental hygiene practices.
Given that an HAI can cost a facility up to $45,000, a more comprehensive approach to surface disinfection may be necessary. The adoption of UV surface treatment technology may be a cost-effective intervention.