Pathogen Control for Laundry Services
Medical Linen Safety. Hospitals and other medical facility linens have a high risk of transferring deadly pathogens between patients if not properly laundered. Healthcare professionals can limit exposure of these pathogens to patients by ensuring their facility uses laundry services that has successfully completed a Laundry Compliance certification in pathogen control.
The pathogen control inspection includes the following:
- Microbiological standards based on testing using the USP 61 Protocol
- Separating soiled and clean areas of their facilities
- Standardize soiled linen handling and equipment maintenance
- Documented housekeeping of surfaces, stations, cleaning schedules and equipment
- Strict washing procedures using pre-determined formulas specifying water temperature and chemistry and allocating specific amounts of time for soaking, rinsing, spinning and other wash cycle functions
- Use of specialized combinations of wash chemicals
- Ensuring acceptable pH for finished goods
- Dryer temperatures
- Quality control features
These measures are followed throughout the entire facility to ensure that the common cold, flu or other pathogen illnesses are not spread between soiled linens and cleaned linens while providing assurance that all pathogens are destroyed during the laundering process.
Soiled Linen Contamination Cases and Studies
Several studies have been released showing the correlation between improper laundering services and the death of patients with fragile immune systems.
- ALM responds to safety mechanisms in place for healthcare textile service
- Link to The New York Times article – April 28, 2014
- New Orleans Times Picayune article and editorial – April 23, 2014
- WVUE Fox 8 New Orleans article and video clip – April 21, 2014
- CDC information on Mucormycosis including outbreak in Joplin, MO following 2011 tornado
- Poster session from presentation on Mucormycosis outbreak – 2012
Compliant Medical Linen Service Providers Near You
Healthcare facilities can quickly and easily narrow their searches for compliant laundries by searching certifications and different companies’ policies at linenservices.com. To use this site, simply enter your zip code or state. From there you can discover which local companies meet your organizational needs. You can also read reviews and contact local services directly.