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Ineffectiveness of Laundered Mops and Cleaning Cloths in Healthcare Revealed

Instead of thoroughly cleaning floors and other high-touch surfaces in hospitals, laundered mops and cleaning cloths may actually be spreading bacteria and potential infection. New research and solutions for reducing the risk of healthcare associated infections (HAIs) will be presented by Contec, Inc. at the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC) 2018 annual conference June 13-15 in Minneapolis.

“Studies show repeated use and inadequate laundering leaves pathogens and other bioburden in mops and wipes that can neutralize disinfectants,” said Jack McBride, CEO at Contec. “So basically, each time you reuse them, you can be redepositing dangerous pathogens right back into the room, exposing patients to potential infection.”

A recent survey by Contec found that infection prevention specialists are aware of this inadequacy as fewer than 1-in-5 reported that they trust their facility’s laundered system completely, and just 17 percent would “Definitely” drink from a glass that has just been wiped with a recently laundered mopping pad. For reliable quality, disposable microfiber cleaning products offer more consistent cleaning outcomes with no risk of cross-contamination.

Research findings will be revealed in a poster session entitled Effectiveness and Bioburden of Microfiber Mops use to Clean Hospital High-touch Environmental Surfaces at 12:30 p.m. on June 13 in Exhibit Hall D. At booth #115, Contec will feature data from their survey of infection prevention specialists plus startling (anonymous) accounts from EVS staff sharing experiences and observances regarding infection control practices at their workplaces. Visitors will also be able to share their own, strictly confidential “confessions” to help build awareness about this significant risk to patient health.

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