The American Hospital Association (AHA) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recently published findings and recommendations for best practices to prevent infections in a variety of physical healthcare environments. Using the Health Care Physical Environment to Prevent and Control Infection: A Best Practice Guide to Help Health Care Organizations Create Safe, Healing Environments contains recommendations, case studies, resources, and information based on key research.
The findings can be used by healthcare facility managers, architects, designers, construction professionals, infection preventionists, and anyone else involved in designing, building, and operating healthcare facilities to improve patient and staff safety and reduce the risk of infection.
Chapter 6, “Flow of Patients, Personnel, Equipment and Waste,” includes recommendations for hospital design that reduces the spread of infection. Specifically, it provides guidance for constructing new facilities and creating efficient workflows that would limit the spread of harmful pathogens.
The AHA/CDC study warns: “If waste is not managed appropriately, that is, contained and separated from clean areas, pathogens can potentially be transmitted via direct contact, in the air, or by vectors including insects and health care personnel.” Recommendations also include, “exploring new technology or simple containment approaches for the disposal of human waste.”
The full guide can be found here.
Serres addresses the challenge with its holistic fluid management solution that provides a completely closed system for collecting and disposing surgical fluids. The Serres solution utilizes soft suction liners for fluid collection and Serres Nemo for on-site disposal of fluid medical waste.
The prevailing method of opening the canisters and pouring the fluids down the drain exposes staff to contamination risk. The Serres solution reduces infection risk by avoiding direct exposure to fluids. Instead of manually emptying the canister into the sewer, hospital staff can simply remove the plugged soft suction liner from the canister and take it to the decontamination room to be emptied and flushed with the Serres Nemo fluid disposal equipment.
Connected to a water and sewage line, the Serres Nemo flushes the contents of the Serres soft suction liner into the sewer in only 20 seconds. At the end of the cycle, the empty suction bag is removed and can be disposed of in accordance with the hospital specific instructions.
For healthcare facilities that are not using a closed system for fluid waste management, it is time to update to new technology that does not require canisters to be opened during any step of a procedure. Contact a Serres representative today to learn how your facility can adopt new best practices.