Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services require health inspectors to focus on infection control practices at nursing homes and hospitals. Guidelines are in place regarding using and changing gloves, handwashing, laundry methods and food-handling practices. Inspectors have the duty to ensure these guidelines are properly followed.
A recent Kaiser study showed 61% of nursing homes were cited for failure to adhere to infection prevention protocols. Staffing levels showed to be a huge factor in this statistic. When choosing a nursing home facility consider whether it has an adequate staff according to recommended ratios because staff to patient ratios directly correlate to better infection prevention.
When understaffed, nursing home employees may not have the necessary time between patients to properly wash their hands or sanitize surfaces. While preventing the spread of the Coronavirus prompted more scrutiny, these protocols have been in place for years to prevent the spread of influenza and antibiotic-resistant bacteria like methicillin-resistant Staphlyoccoccus aureaus (MRSA), both of which can be very lethal to elderly patients.
Some key types of Infection Prevention practices include:
- Hand hygiene
- Proper use of masks, gloves and gowns
- Surface cleaning and disinfection
- Respiratory Hygiene
- Proper waste disposal
Ensuring your loved ones are cared for in a safe environment is an essential part of Long-Term Care Planning. To learn more contact Stouffer Legal at 443-470-3599 in the Greater Baltimore area.