March 24, 2012

Canadian Hospitals - Dirty?

C. Difficile bacteria
Today, I watched a Canadian Broadcasting Corporation documentary, produced by their program "Marketplace", which dealt with the issue of cleanliness in Canadian Hospitals. 

The producers of this program went to a hospital in Canada and applied a gel to numerous objects in the hospital - elevator buttons, light switches, door knobs, bed railings, bathroom taps etc. This gel cannot be seen and can only be detected by an infrared light.  24 hours after the application of this gel, they went back to the hospital to check to see if these objects had been cleaned. If the gel was still present, the object had not been cleaned. 

Some of the bathroom taps were cleaned, but almost everything else had not been cleaned. 

Cleanliness in a medical facility is always important because everyone there is ill to begin with. Hospitals aren't vacation resorts. You go there because you have a serious medical condition.

In recent years, many hospitals and nursing homes in Canada and in the U.S.A. have reported virulent outbreaks of "C. Difficile" (Clostridium difficile) which is a bacteria that can kill you. 

You can go to a hospital with one particular problem and end up with C. difficile due to cross-contamination from other patients. 

It has been stated by medical authorities that extremely rigorous disinfection protocols are required in order to decrease or eliminate this risk.

Rigorous cleaning is the only option
So...what do Canadian hospitals do? They eliminate permanent cleaning staff positions or hire private industry cleaning contractors, who push their employees to clean 3 hospital wards when they should be responsible for cleaning one.  

In the end, because of this unrealistic work-load, everything is "wiped" and nothing is disinfected. 

In the end, it is all about the money.  Seemingly, we don't have the money needed to hire staff to properly clean medical facilities. 

God help all who are sick.

God help all who are sick and who go to a hospital and who contract yet another disease due to being hospitalized and because of the lack of cleanliness. Amen.

No comments: