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Dear Readers,
Housekeeping is a very critical function in hospitals. This issue we bring you a variety of articles which can add values to managing this important aspect within your hospital. The main functions of housekeeping is overall cleanliness, ensuring maintenance of the building and its infrastructure, linen management, waste management, pest control, infection control, safety and security of the patients as well as the infrastructure and interior decoration. All this ensures the ambience promotes a healing environment. Even though outsourcing is an option available for housekeeping if one decided to have housekeeping as a department within the hospital it needs to be managed well. For this articles are provided from recruitment, to maintaining records, job descriptions, to training available for housekeepers.

Our collaborating partner this time is VISION 2020 UK. We look forward to your feedback and we wish you happy browsing and learning.

Happy Reading!

Regards,

Vision 2020 e-resource team
The Issue Features...
Housekeeping in hospitals
Vol. 3 No. 7 July 2006
• Introduction
• Cleanliness
• Maintenance
• Linen Management
• Waste Management
• Pest Control
• Infection Control
• Safety and Security
• Interior Decoration
• Housekeeping Management
• Recruitment
• Records
• Job Description
• Training
• Collaborating Partner



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Hospital is a place, which renders medical service to the patients. The role of housekeeping in hospitals is to create a peaceful, infection � free and pleasant atmosphere required for the speedy recovery of the patients. It should also create a homely atmosphere for the patients.

Housekeeping refers to the general cleaning of hospitals and clinics, including the floors, walls, and certain types of equipment, tables and other surfaces. The purpose of general housekeeping is to:
  • reduce the number of microorganisms that may come in contact with patients, visitors, staff and the community; and
  • provide a clean and pleasant atmosphere for patients and staff.
  • INTRODUCTION TO HOUSEKEEPING

  • Abstract:
    This article gives a brief introduction to the aims and the objectives of setting up a housekeeping department in a hospital. It also tells about the housekeeping departmental structure, the job responsibilities of the housekeeping staff, etc.

  • HOUSEKEEPING IN EYE HOSPITALS


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A hospital has to be clean in order to prevent infection and provide quality service. Cleanliness is the absence of dirt, including dust, stains and bad smells. In more recent times, since the germ theory of disease, it has also come to mean an absence of germs and other hazardous materials. "Cleanliness is next to Godliness," a common phrase, describes humanity's high opinion of being clean.
  • BASIC CLEANING METHODS - PART I

  • Abstract:
    This article details the various methodologies involved in the process of dust free maintenance in housekeeping.

  • BASIC CLEANING METHODS - PART II

  • Abstract:
    This article briefs about various kinds of stains in hospital setup and how to remove them.

  • USING A VACUUM CLEANER

  • Abstract:
    This article tells in detail about how to use the vacuum cleaner providing a dust free surrounding in the hospital. It also tells in detail about the cleaning process and procedures and the methods of cleaning while using the vacuum cleaner.


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Maintenance means preserving and keeping things in good working condition, through prevention, detection and correction of faults, damage and wear. The best way to preserve infrastructure and equipment and keep everything running efficiently is to do maintenance checks at regular intervals and repair any parts that are likely to wear out or have worn out. These inspections must be done by competent and properly trained people.

Importance of maintenance
  • The building and equipment should be ready for use at all times.
  • Quality of care as well as productivity depend partly on the building and equipment being in good condition at all times
  • The building and the equipment have been heavily invested in and should be well taken care of to ensure longevity.


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One of the important jobs of the Housekeeping Department is clothes and linen management. This involves all functions from purchase of linen to laundering to condemnation. In a hospital different types of clothes and linen are used. The theatre gowns worn by doctors and patients, the doctors� coats, bed sheets, additional sheets and pillow covers. In addition to these, we also have napkins, towels, hand towels, table covers, curtains, and cushion covers. It is the job of the Housekeeping Department to ensure clean and hygienic washing of all these items, and then distributing them to different areas of the hospital.
  • LINEN MANAGEMENT

  • Abstract:
    This article describes in detail the process of linen management, including the requirements, procedures and record keeping.

  • LAUNDRY AND LINEN SERVICES

  • Abstract:
    This article describes in detail about the process and the procedures that have to be followed by the laundry and linen service employees in the hospital. It also tells in detail about the precautious steps that can be followed while performing such services.

  • MAKING THE BED

  • Abstract:
    This article talks in detail about the importance of proper bed making in hospitals.

  • ENVIRONMENTAL IMPROVEMENTS IN LAUNDRY EQUIPMENT AND PRODUCTS

  • Abstract:
    This article provides in detail about how the Laundry management plays a vital role in Housekeeping. It also deals with the technological improvement in the Laundry Equipments and how technology can be efficiently used in providing good service.


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Waste constitutes a problem, the size of the problem varying with the size of the institution, because waste must be disposed of economically and efficiently, and in a sanitary way. Safety against fire, prevention of cross-contamination by infectious materials, odor control, and pest control are all included in waste disposal procedures. A carefully planned program of waste disposal will safeguard not only personnel and patient but also the community.
  • WASTE MANAGEMENT

  • Abstract:
    This article talks in detail about the bio medical and other waste that cause pollution and infection to the humans in the environmental surroundings. It also describes about the precautious steps that can be taken for efficiently disposing the medical wastage to avoid infection.

  • WASTE REDUCTION AND DISPOSAL OPTIONS FOR SPECIFIC HOSPITAL WASTES

  • Abstract:
    This article provides in detail about the variety of wastes generated in the hospitals that require special waste management technique for providing healthy environment. It also provides a Fact Sheet that presents waste reduction opportunities such as source reduction, reuse, and recycling as well as waste disposal options for various materials generated at hospitals.

  • COSTS RELATED TO HEALTH-CARE WASTE MANAGEMENT

  • Abstract:
    This article provides in detail about the costs of construction, operation, and maintenance of system for managing health-care waste in hospitals. It also describes on how we can effective plan the cost requirement for waste management.

  • A TQM APPROACH TO IMPLEMENTATION OF HANDLING AND MANAGEMENT OF HOSPITAL WASTE IN TATA MAIN HOSPITAL

  • Abstract:
    This article deals with Total Quality Management of the Biomedical wasted. It also provides in detail the process of waste management by collecting the source of wastes, analyzing how the wastes can be disposed off.

  • BIOMEDICAL WASTE MANAGEMENT: AN INFRASTRUCTURAL SURVEY OF HOSPITALS

  • Abstract:
    This article is a study of hospitals carried out from various sectors like Government, Private, Charitable institutions etc. to assess the infrastructural requirement for Biomedical Waste Management. It also describes in detail the cost estimation worked out for a hospital where all infrastructure as per each and every requirement of BMW rules had been implemented and then it was compared with other hospitals where hospitals have made compromises on each stage of BMW Mgt.

  • HEALTH CARE WASTE MANAGEMENT

  • Abstract:
    This article provides in detail about the variety of wastes generated in the hospitals that require special waste management technique for providing healthy environment. It also provides a fact Sheet that presents waste reduction opportunities such as source reduction, reuse, and recycling as well as waste disposal options for the following materials generated at hospitals.


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No matter how clean one keeps one�s surroundings, you cannot avoid the �uninvited guests� � the pests. It is not only embarrassing but also speaks badly of a hospital where one sees rats, cockroaches, and lizards running around. Pest Control is another major job of the Housekeeping Department. We have provided articles which discusses about a few common pests and methods of controlling them.
  • PEST CONTROL

  • Abstract:
    This article describes in detail the need for pest control and lists the various processes, procedures and techniques involved in pest control.


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In order to provide better and safer hospital facilities for its patients and personnel, the Health Care Institution has to adopt a programme of infection control involving all sections of the Health Care Centre.

A satisfactory infection control programme requires the co-operation of all personnel involved with patients. Any break in technique or lapse in discipline on the part of one person can render the efforts of a number of conscientious individuals ineffective. It is only through co-operative efforts of every member of the staff that infections can be prevented.
  • INFECTION CONTROL

  • Abstract:
    This article talks in detail about the causes for infection. This article also highlights the need and objectives of the infection control program. It describes the precautious steps to be taken to avoid infection. It also describes how the housekeeping department plays a vital role in infection control. It also tells in detail the procedures and processing steps handled by the housekeeping department in infection control at hospitals.

  • STERILISATION IN OPHTHALMIC PRACTICE

  • Abstract:
    Provides an overview of the role and importance of sterilization and its different types as well as presents details of equipment-specific sterilization techniques, best practices, precautions and policies relating to sterilization in the Operating rooms and tips on how to prevent infections from spreading in hospital units.

  • STERILIZATION FOR INSTRUMENTS

  • Abstract:
    This protocol deals with how to sterilize the equipments and instruments to avoid infections or another problems during treatment with these instruments. Sterilizing the equipments and instruments is very difficult job to maintain. It invlolves how to sterilize the instruments during surgery, how to sharpen them etc.

  • GUIDELINES ON PREVENTION AND CONTROL OF HOSPITAL ASSOCIATED INFECTIONS

  • Abstract:
    This article provides as a guideline for infection control in the hospital. It also highlights the various sources that cause infection, magnitude of the problem, roles and the responsibilities of the Health Care professionals for infection control in hospitals.


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Everyone in a health care facility should be conscious of safety hazards. Some hazards exist because of the nature of these institutions; others are the result of carelessness. Joint action by all personnel is required to reduce accidents.
  • HOUSE KEEPING AND SECURITY

  • Abstract:
    This article talks in detail about the importance of housekeeping department in providing safe and secure environment in the hospitals. It also gives in detail about the first aid and other precaution activities.


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Interior decoration is the embellishment of a shelter by the addition of a complex of furnishings, art, and crafts, appropriately combined to achieve a planned result or design. The following are some of the factors that influence the specific decoration or design chosen for an institution.
  • Purpose of the building and its component parts.
  • Geographic and climatic factors
  • Traditions of the building�s users.
  • Availability of materials
  • Prevailing socio economic conditions in the area.
  • INTERIOR DECORATION

  • Abstract:
    This article describes in detail about the various activates involved in providing a pleasing ambience in a hospital.

  • HORTICULTURE AND GARDEN MAINTENANCE

  • Abstract:
    This article provides a guideline for horticulture and details how gardening plays a vital role in maintaining the fresh and hygienic atmosphere of a hospital.


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  • HOUSEKEEPING MANAGEMENT

  • Abstract:
    This article details the steps involved in organizing a housekeeping department in a hospital, such as infrastructure in terms of equipments, resources, etc. This article also briefs about the orientation, training, organizational structure and job responsibilities of housekeeping department.


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To fulfill the obligation of maintaining a safe, pleasant and functional environment for patients and staff, the person responsible for housekeeping should have the following abilities and skills:
  • Basic knowledge of health care hygiene and sanitation
  • Ability to plan, administer and develop all phases of a comprehensive housekeeping programme that will provide a suitable environment for the institutions medical and administrative activities
  • Demonstration of personal qualities of leadership and skill in coordinating a major activity within the administrative programme
  • General working knowledge of cleaning operations and interior decoration
  • General working knowledge of cleaning operations and interior decoration
  • Ability to assign, supervise and evaluate the work of subordinate supervisors and their personnel
  • Ability to develop the departmental budget and to direct the expenditure of monies.


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Records form the memory of any business; they are the written evidence of performance. Sometimes a record may be the evidence of nonperformance, as well! Good records, simple and up to date, along with a procedure manual, make it possible for the housekeeping department to function under a substitute during the absence of the executive housekeeper. These records and procedures are a protection the housekeeper owes to the administration.



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A job description is a written statement outlining the duties, responsibilities, and specifications of a job. It should be general in nature, and is not to be confused with the step-by-step work procedures used for training and standardization. The job description is a valuable aid in filling a position, since it provides the important facts that make it possible to select the person best qualified, and helps the prospective employee to know whether he will be happy in the job.

A sample job description of senior, mid level and junior Housekeepers are offered below for your reference.
  • HOUSEKEEPING JOB DESCRIPTION

  • Abstract:
    This is a model job description for the House keepers in an Eye Hospital. It clearly focuses the duties of the housekeeping staffs, and how to manage the duties in an organized way.


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VISION 2020 UK :

VISION 2020 UK is an umbrella organisation which facilitates greater collaboration and co-operation between organisations within the UK which focus on visual impairment and operate on a national, regional or international basis.

VISION 2020 UKs objectives are:
  • To prevent avoidable blindness
  • To improve the quality of services to visually impaired people
  • To improve the training available to professionals providing advice and services
  • To improve communication between organisations within the VI Sector
  • To improve the availability of information to visually impaired people
  • To ensure that the voices of the visually impaired are heard when planning services and their opinions sought on key issues affecting their lives
  • To raise public awareness of the issues and problems relating to sight loss
In addition to the above, VISION 2020 UK will seek to provide a unified response on key issues affecting visually impaired people and to provide visual impairment sector representatives for consultation groups, working parties and project groups.

  1. June 2006 - Quality Assurance in Eye Care
  2. May 2006 - Refractive Correction
  3. April 2006 - Evidence for Action - Cataract Control
  4. March 2006 - Leadership
  5. February 2006 - Community Outreach - Cataract
  6. January 2006 - Counselling
  7. December 2005 - Vision Centre
  8. November 2005 - Human Resources in Eye Care
  9. October 2005 - Ophthalmic Equipment and Instruments
  10. September 2005 - IEC
  11. August 2005 - Start up eye Hospital
  12. July 2005 - Refractive Error
  13. June 2005 - Low Vision
  14. May 2005 - Cataract
  15. April 2005 - Paediatric Eye Care Service Delivery
  16. March 2005 - Strategic Planning Tools
  17. February 2005 - Frequently Asked Questions on Eye Glasses!
  18. January 2005 - Refractive Error Service Resources
  19. December 2004 - Highlighting Starting a New Eye Hospital Tool
  20. November 2004 - Diabetic Retinopathy Knowledge, Attitude and Practice Study
  21. October 2004 - Strategy worksheet for continually improving quality of services and checklist
  22. September 2004 - Quality Cataract Series - Paramedical Contributions Module
  23. August 2004 - Sterilization Protocol
  24. July 2004 - Medical Records Protocol
  25. June 2004 - Magnitude of Cataract Blindness Estimation Tool
  26. May 2004 - Cataract Frequently Asked Questions
  27. April 2004 - Introduction to SiteNews
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