The Work Behind the Scenes That’s Preventing Infections

April 25, 2017

A lot of effort, time, research, and education goes into preventing the spread of infection at Memorial Healthcare. Nurses at the hospital undertake a variety of roles, some of which are relegated to more behind-the-scenes tasks that most visitors don’t witness firsthand. That’s the case for Debbie Rose, an infection control nurse at Memorial Healthcare.

While not always working directly with patients, her work certainly affects them.

“I love doing what I do because it really touches every unit, every part of the hospital,” she says. “I get to provide education, help the staff understand different infections they don’t have experience with. I interact everywhere.”

Rose’s work includes data collection, educating staff, and monitoring infections. She speaks fondly of the education part of her job, citing Memorial as a friendly atmosphere.

“One of the really nice things about working at Memorial is the people I work with,” she says. “Everyone here wants Memorial to be excellent. We all have that same goal.”

And a recent addition to the hospital, relevant to Debbie’s job of infection control, continues Memorial’s excellence. A Clorox Healthcare® Optimum-UV Enlight® System is the latest addition to Memorial Healthcare’s technological repertoire.

“It’s used for supplemental cleaning,” says Rose. “We clean the room, run the light, and where it touches it will kill off the microorganisms that didn’t get taken care of during the cleaning.”

Memorial Healthcare purchased the technology with the funds raised through the Memorial Healthcare Foundation 2017 Annual Dinner Dance. Using an UV light, it kills microorganisms by inactivating their DNA, which renders them harmless and unable to replicate. It kills key organisms associated with increased hospital-inquired infections, is easy to use, and holds advanced data collection and reporting capabilities. It’s also effective against a range of dangerous pathogens, including MRSA and C. difficile spores in just five minutes at a distance of eight feet.

“I’m so glad we are getting this light,” Rose says. “It will be helpful to patients because it will really provide a clean environment. The room they are coming into is going to be very clean.”

The technology will not only provide further reduction in Memorial’s already low infection rates but give patients that further peace of mind that their room is clean and safe. It will be implemented in all operating rooms and patient isolation rooms following the environmental services team thoroughly cleaning and disinfecting each room.

And no infection control discussion is complete without mentioning how something so easy to do is the biggest thing you can do in the fight against infection: wash your hands.

“We say it all the time,” says Rose. “Our hands carry so many microorganisms that are easy to pass along. Wash your hands, everybody.”

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