Running a Clinic? Here’s How to Keep Your Patients Safe With Sanitation

If you’re running a clinic, cleanliness will be your first priority. After all, you need to keep your patients safe, not to mention your staff. 

Cleanliness is an integral part of the professional ethics of medicine. It is vital for protecting the patients’ best interests, keeping them from harm, and generally doing good for them. 

Ideal doctor

Here are 7 tips to help you keep your patients safe with sanitation. 

1). Fresh Linens 

Linens are important for patients’ comfort: drape sheets, flat sheets, fitted sheets, pillowcases, blankets, and underpads are all important for patients to be as comfortable as possible while in your clinic. 

This is also why linens need to be routinely kept fresh and changed. Find a regular supplier of fresh, high-quality medical linens, and make sure to replace old, worn, or hopelessly stained linens as needed. 

Fresh linens will greatly limit the potential for the spread of diseases and contaminating material. This alone is reason enough to keep an abundant supply, to say nothing of the comfort of your patients. Seeing fresh linens will also help to reassure them that they’ve chosen the right doctor or other healthcare provider. 

2).  Fresh Gloves

Like linens, fresh medical gloves are an important part of limiting contamination between patients. 

It is stating the obvious to point out that each new patient warrants a set of fresh gloves, but gloves should also not be worn in hallways. Additionally, they should be changed when moving from a residential area to a restroom that is shared.    

As with medical linens, maintaining a large supply of fresh medical gloves is important. 

3). Cleaning the Most-Touched Surfaces 

While cleanliness is important everywhere in your clinic, you’ll want your cleaning crews to focus on the surfaces that are touched the most, and by the most people. In particular, bed rails, doorknobs, call buttons, remotes, and phones should receive particular attention. 

Areas that are touched by more people have more opportunities to pick up bacteria, so it is a good idea to have them cleaned more assiduously than other areas. 

4). Working from Cleaner to Dirtier Areas

Another somewhat counterintuitive tip is to have staff clean from the areas that are already cleaner to those that are dirtier. 

While it may not be intuitive to start in the kitchen and move to a sitting room and then a restroom – our minds tend to leap to the idea that we should do it the other way around – cleaning from the areas that are already cleaner actually limits the potential for potentially very dangerous pathogens to spread. 

The reality is that even very thorough cleaning is not perfect, and by starting in the cleanest areas – places like kitchens – one will limit the potential for them to be contaminated by infectious agents from the dirtiest places, such as the restrooms. 

5). Use Trash Bags and Receptacles 

Trash bags and receptacles are important for getting rid of waste in general, but one thing that is perhaps underappreciated about them is the way they help to limit the spread of airborne contaminants.

When soiled bedclothes are properly placed in linen bins or trash bags are tied securely without releasing the excess air and then disposed of, this helps to limit the potential for contaminants and infectious agents to spread. It’s a good idea to help staff understand these facts and teach them to dispose of things accordingly.

6). Prevent Cross-Contamination

Another aspect of containing contamination is removing and disposing of it in each individual room. Staff should not use the same mops and rags in the kitchens or dining areas and then the restrooms. 

Instead, use a cleaning system that relies on disposing of contaminants in each individual room. The advantage of doing this is that it ensures that bacteria and other contaminants do not leave any given room. 

Not only is this approach more thorough, it also significantly reduces risks that infectious agents will travel from one room to another. 

7). Safe Disposal of Waste and Contaminants  

From soiled linens to befouled cleaning fluids to materials contaminated with biological substances, all wastes and contaminants must be disposed of properly in safe areas and safe ways. No-touch cleaning systems make the disposal particularly easy and workable. 

Make sure staff understand the importance of this step, and train everyone in proper disposal procedures and supplies. The result will be a cleaner and safer clinic. 

Conclusion

Sanitation is absolutely crucial to maintaining a clean and safe clinic. Contemporary best practices in sanitation go beyond a mere requirement to clean each room: they include a variety of practices designed to limit the potential reach and spread of contaminants and infectious agents and to ensure their proper disposal. 

Implement these 7 sanitary tips, and you’ll be off to a good start with regard to protecting your patients.  

About Mohit Tater

Mohit is the co-founder and editor of Entrepreneurship Life, a place where entrepreneurs, start-ups, and business owners can find wide ranging information, advice, resources, and tools for starting, running, and growing their businesses.

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