Behind the (Cubicle) Curtain: How to Schedule, Track, and Report Cleanings with Smart Facility Software
Every year, nearly 1.7 million Americans contract hospital-acquired infections, which are transmitted primarily via high-touch surfaces. One of the most commonly touched surfaces? Cubicle curtains.
Almost every single healthcare worker who comes into a patient room touches the cubicle curtain––lab technicians, EVS workers, food technicians, nurses, and physicians––and every touch contributes to a patient’s risk of infection.
Cubicle curtains therefore have to be cleaned regularly, which is a challenge for a number of reasons––from setting cleaning protocols, to scheduling the appropriate staff, to keeping track of the schedule, which gets complicated when curtains are replaced ahead of schedule due to an isolation clean or being visibly soiled.
But as EVS Directors know, it’s not just a matter of keeping curtains clean. You also have to document the cleaning in order to prove compliance with your facility’s policies and protocols. In order to ensure your accreditation, your facility’s policy must be clear, and you must have proof that this policy has been followed. When it comes time for Joint Commission certification, they will check for the existence of curtain cleaning/replacement policies and documentation that they are being followed.
Documentation of Cubicle Curtain Cleaning Policies Includes:
- Documentation of your facility’s policy for cleaning cubicle curtains;
- Schedule of how often they are cleaned;
- Training protocols for cleaning and changing cubicle curtains, including how often these trainings are scheduled;
- Proof that all of the above parameters have been met.
As with so many other things when it comes to EVS, it’s not just about the cleaning: it’s about the entire workflow.
Here’s How Smart Facility Software Can Help:
Manage Cubicle Curtain Scheduling & Tracking
With ES Optimizer, you can build scheduled tasks into the EVS workflow so they aren’t forgotten. That includes not just daily cleaning tasks, but more infrequent project work––like cleaning or replacing your cubicle curtains.
Here’s what the software enables you to do:
- Calculate time needed for cubicle curtain cleaning, either by taking an exact inventory of cubicle curtains in each individual room or by assuming all rooms with a particular room type have curtains;
- Set how often curtains should be cleaned by default for the whole facility––if needed, this can be overridden either by individual patient room (e.g. if a curtain is visibly soiled and needs to be cleaned ahead of schedule), or by room type (if a certain room type needs to be cleaned more frequently);
- Filter project assignments to see all cubicle curtain cleaning projects, and/or filter by open versus completed projects, so you can easily see what has been done and what still needs to be done;
- Schedule the cleaning;
- As they clean each cubicle curtain, technicians can log it as complete it on their mobile device––automatically documenting the process in your system.
Track Cubicle Curtains in each room or assume all rooms of a particular room type have curtains.
Document and Verify your Cleaning Process
With ES Optimizer and Service Optimizer Reporting, you can easily verify that your facility’s cubicle curtains are being cleaned according to your facility’s policy. There are two reports specific to cubicle curtain cleaning:
- Cubicle Curtain Cleaning Log Report: This report shows cubicle curtain cleaning data for a selected time period;
- Cubicle Curtains Overdue for Cleaning: This report shows details for cubicle curtains that are overdue for cleaning by at least seven days.
Using these reports, you can make sure that you never miss a cleaning. And when it comes time for certification, you will be fully prepared to provide whatever documentation is required.
The most important role of EVS Teams is to keep their patients safe. ES Optimizer helps share the load, by automating crucial but tricky-to-track tasks like cubicle curtain cleaning. And it lessens your administrative burden, by documenting the process so you can easily report on it when it comes time for certification.