The Importance of Surface Integrity in Infection Prevention
Thorough environmental cleaning is critical to prevent the transmission of infection. Although the hospital bed has been largely overlooked as a potential source of contamination, studies have shown that the mattress is among the highest-touch surfaces in the patient environment, and may harbor pathogens that result in infection outbreaks 1.
Mattress covers become damaged from constant use and frequent cleaning. A UK study found that over 27% of mattresses were damaged 2, while a recent study at a US hospital revealed that over 26% of mattresses showed occult damage to the interior waterproof backing 3. The FDA issued a Safety Communication 2013, warning that damaged mattress covers can allow blood and body fluids to penetrate the mattress core, posing a risk of cross contamination and infection. Click here for FDA Safety Communication
Furthermore, other soft surfaces like vinyl are prone to damage and carry the same cross contamination risk as mattresses.
Damaged surfaces cannot be properly cleaned and break the chain of environmental decontamination. Catching damage early and restoring the surface to an intact state ensures it remains fully cleanable.
WHAT ARE YOUR PATIENTS LYING AND SITTING ON?