General Cleanliness and Laundry
Photo by Steve Sara / MCSP
HCFs should maintain a stock of cleaning and disinfectant supplies. Designated laundry stations should be established with ample detergent and water to clean sheets, towels and other materials.
Note: National policies and standards should be consulted when designing, monitoring or evaluating cleaning and laundry standards.
Appropriate Staff, Process and Management Considerations:
Each HCF should maintain designated cleaners on staff. These staff members should be trained in cleaning and familiar with infection prevention and control protocols, as well as waste management, sanitation and wastewater protocols. Facilities should ensure that laundry and cleaning needs are considered when purchasing and re-stocking cleaning supplies. Clear protocols should be in place for switching bed sheets and pillows as needed and delivering them safely to the laundry facility. Routine cleaning protocols should also be established for all HCF areas.
In addition, overall cleanliness of the HCF grounds should be maintained. Perception of the facility as a clean, model physical space should be a mantra and goal of the facility.
MCSP Rapid Assessment Questions:
To improve general cleanliness and laundry services, each HCF can consider the following questions from MCSP’s HCF rapid assessment tool. The tool was adapted from WHO’s Essential Environmental Standards in Health Care.
Additional Tools and Resources for General Cleanliness and Laundry in HCF settings:
- Soap Box Collaborative’s WASH and Clean toolkit, which includes various WASH HCF assessment tools. Tools 1 and 6 include cleaning and laundry considerations: Tool 1: Facility needs assessment Tool, and Tool 6: Interviews with Cleaners.
- In 2017, WHO & UNICEF published the WASHFit Tool, which includes essential indicator and advanced indicator assessment tools for cleaning and laundry (Tool 2), risk assessment templates (Tool 3), and improvement plan templates (Tool 4).