Hospitals and outpatient facilities alike are always working hard to reduce healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) through comprehensive preventative measures, but one oft-overlooked facet of a healthcare facility’s process could be causing far more harm than most realize.
Home laundering, in which doctors and nurses clean their scrubs, gowns, and uniforms in their own laundry machines, has been denounced as an “insufficient alternative” to healthcare-accredited commercial laundry services, according to a new report published in the journal PeriOp Briefing. Because medical professionals usually lack both the facilities and technologies to properly launder garments as well as a standard set of recommendations or guidelines to follow, doing this work at home may fail to eliminate pathogens, potentially causing patients to fall ill.
So what are the differences between home laundering and that of ImageFIRST Tampa, an accredited provider of healthcare laundry (linens, robes, gowns, and medical scrub uniforms, in Tampa)?
A Protective Coating to hinder bacteria proliferation.
Our laundering process, which we call Triple BioShield Protection, is uniquely designed to service the healthcare industry (the sole focus of our operations), and accordingly, we have a special softener/protective coating to safeguard our products not just during or immediately after washing, but rather long past when they’ve left our facility. Before that, our wash process itself leaves pathogens “Dead on Contact” – something a home laundry machine is not likely to be equipped to do.
Plastic Barriers on every garment or linen.
The third step of our Triple BioShield Protection process is to provide an individual plastic wrap to every item we deliver to our customers. There is a strong risk that garments which have been improperly transported (without a barrier protecting them from contamination), as in home laundering, will carry dangerous pathogens straight to the site of a patient’s surgery, causing infection. Our system keeps a facility’s laundry protected until it is ready to be used.
Along with our Triple BioShield Protection, we also provide all of our clients with the 5-Point Product Quality system, to ensure they never need worry about the condition of their products. This means we offer five separate assurances that you are receiving the best healthcare laundry service on the market. Our clients benefit from:
1) Soft, comfortable, premium products
2) The highest standards in sanitation, that go beyond “best-practice” expectations
3) Our “Bright White Standard”, making sure every linen item is crisp and white, without stains or damage
4) Individual, sealed packaging for gowns, allowing patients to open them themselves and be assured of sanitation. All other products are also encased in plastic.
5) Independent laboratory testing on all of our cleaning processes, to ensure that we meet and exceed government standards.
Unfortunately, home laundering offers none of these benefits – hospitals can only hope that their medical staff take the best precautions they can when completing the laundering process. With ImageFIRST Tampa, hospitals can benefit from an affordable, consistent service designed uniquely to suit their needs.
To learn more about how ImageFIRST Tampa can help your hospital or outpatient facility prevent HAIs and streamline your laundering of gowns, linens, and other medical supplies, contact us through our online form or call us at 800-932-7472.