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Tips for staying on top of hygiene concerns at your facility

Posted by Dude Solutions Canada, Inc. | Wednesday, August 12, 2015

As an administrator of an assisted living facility plugged into the needs and desires of your residents, you're also responsible for balancing the factors that contribute to resident satisfaction and overall experience.

In addition to major concerns such as access to medical care and well-kept facilities, hygiene also plays an important role in maintaining a high level of resident satisfaction. In fact, hygiene within your building can factor into many things that can affect seniors every day.

For example, lack of hygiene can lead to sickness or injury. Similarly, it can impinge on other residents' enjoyment of their homes. Maintaining proper hygiene in a facility that may be home to hundreds of people can seem like a daunting task. Fortunately, these helpful tips can help you ensure that you have hygiene in the bag. 

Regular cleaning is a must

If you want your residents to adhere to a higher standard of personal hygiene, you should set the example yourself by ensuring your facility meets your own lofty standards for cleanliness. Revamp your cleaning schedule to ensure that the building and all its necessary equipment are being cleaned as often as necessary. 

While you likely carry out simple tasks like vacuuming on a regular basis, don't overlook the more involved procedures as well. For example, when was the last time your floors and counters were scrubbed? What about the upholstery on the furniture in the building's common areas? Surfaces of any kind can be breeding grounds for potentially harmful bacteria, and they should be cleaned regularly - not just when a spill occurs.

If you're concerned about personnel considerations involved with an increased cleaning schedule, consider outsourcing regular custodial duties to a third-party contractor. 

Go hands-free

You've likely heard the horror stories about how many types of germs live on your hands. With this in mind, any solution you can come up with that eliminates the need for people to physically touch things is one that can contribute to a more hygienic experience. 

One particular area of interest in this regard is the bathroom. Installing hands-free toilets, sinks and paper towel dispensers can significantly reduce the amount of contact with germs your residents encounter. As an added bonus, automatic fixtures tend to be more efficient, meaning you'll also be spending less money on water usage.

Make it a community affair

Proper hygiene rests in the hands of every staff member and resident at your facility. So it only makes sense to get your community involved with promoting and maintaining proper hygiene wherever possible. By placing hand sanitizer dispensers and signs reminding of the importance of using them in common areas, you can instill in your residents of the importance of good hygiene practices. 

It's also important to drive home the point that hygiene is a resident-focused concern, and your seniors themselves should take an active role in enforcing it. For example, because seniors can be more susceptible to illness, your residents should take it on themselves to remind visitors and neighbors to wash their hands before interacting.

Get to know your residents

Tips for staying on top of hygiene concerns at your facility In an assisted living setting, it's not out of the question that some residents have medical obstacles standing in the way of their hygiene. For example, deteriorating personal hygiene can often accompany things like Alzheimer's disease and dementia.

This is obviously a sensitive subject that should be handled delicately on a case-by-case basis. By getting to know your residents, it can be easier to determine who may have special needs that could jeopardize hygiene among your residents. Ensure that these residents have support in the form of family or support staff who are available to guide them through processes such as bathing and doing laundry as part of their daily routine. 

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