Are COVID-19 Protocols Keeping Other Pathogens in Check?

Facility leaders have focused on COVID-19 more than other health care-acquired infections

April 14, 2021

Since the coronavirus pandemic began, COVID-19 has been the illness most reported as a health care-acquired infection (HAI), compared to other illnesses such as C. difficile (C. diff), methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), and norovirus. According to CNN, COVID-19 was the third leading cause of death last year behind heart disease and cancer. The European Cleaning Journal takes a look at whether coronavirus cleaning and hygiene protocols have been keeping other pathogens in check.

According to GOJO Industry’s vice-president Chris Wakefield, the focus and emphasis on COVID-19 precautions has been necessary to avoid overwhelming the health services with multiple illnesses. SARS CoV-2 hygiene measures like handwashing and sanitizing not only help keep COVID-19 at bay; they also are effective against MRSA, C. diff, sepsis, and norovirus.

“It is important that people continue to adhere to these good practices once the pandemic eventually eases,” Wakefield said.

Joanne Gilliard, Jangro Ltd. CEO, said, “COVID-19 hasn’t really changed the way in which cleaning is performed—but it has increased its frequency. It has also led to a surge in demand for cleaning and hygiene products and has impacted operatives in other ways, such as in the increased use of comprehensive personal protective equipment (PPE).”

Mark Hazelwood, Clenetix director and co-founder, added that cleaning and hand hygiene will not fade away when the pandemic is over, “This heightened sense of awareness around hygiene is here to stay and people will remain extra vigilant for many years to come—particularly in healthcare facilities where vulnerability is higher.”

Thomas Bergin, Essity’s health care hygiene marketing director, said COVID-19 has helped to improve cleaning standards and made health care professionals more aware to clean effectively. “The pandemic has had the effect of highlighting the importance of hygiene in all care settings,” he said.

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