Ontario, Canada – The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported last year that the number of Healthcare Associated Infections (HAIs) in the U.S. has been steadily declining, “although there is much more work to be done.”
According to the CDC, on any given day, at least one in 31 hospital patients has contracted a minimum of one healthcare-associated infection.
One reason for this downward trend, according to Brad Evans, general manager of Optisolve®, a new technology that helps locate and map out where pathogens on hidden on surfaces, is that we are learning so much more about HAIs.
“We are now also using more effective ways to locate [HAI] pathogens, so that hospital housekeepers and cleaning professionals can eradicate them.”
According to Evans, some of the things the cleaning industry should know about HAIs are the following:
- Bacteria cause roughly 90 percent of HAIs; ten percent, the result of fungi.
- Of dozens of pathogen groups, only eighty-two percent are related to HAIs.
- Staphylococcus aureus, one group that causes most HAIs, can survive on surfaces from seven days to one year.
- Enterococcus species, another pathogen group and the second most common causing HAIs, can survive on surfaces from five days to 2.5 years.
- While these bacteria can survive up to 2.5 years, most HAI-causing bacteria tend to survive on a surface from five to seven days.
- As to why some pathogens live longer on surfaces than others, “this can vary due to several factors, but typically it comes down to three things: humidity, temperature, and the ability of the pathogens to create a biofilm.”
- These pathogens are typically spread in the following ways: by direct contact; becoming airborne and then inhaled; or from what is called a, “vehicle,” eating a food item or touching a surface contaminated with one of these pathogens.
With what we have learned about HAIs, Evans says many hospitals have evolved from a reactive approach to one that is proactive in their attempt to protect human health.”
A Canadian-based company, OptiSolve provides a vulnerability assessment service using proprietary surface imaging technology. The system produces high quality images to proactively reveal where pathogens remain before and after cleaning, providing visual results as well as evidence-based recommendations to assist with proactive prevention and training. The outcome is healthier spaces and validation that investments in cleaning activities are being maximized. More information is available at https://optisolve.net. Company contact, Brad Evans, firstname.lastname@example.org.