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Inadequate Hygiene

Proper hygiene is crucial to preventing infections and decreasing death rates in congregate care settings, like hospitals and nursing homes.

Nursing home residents are already at higher risk for infection because their immune systems tend to be weaker than those of younger people.  Infections can also thrive in congregate settings.

Nursing homes have a responsibility to maintain proper hygiene.  This includes providing adequate personal care to residents, like helping them with toileting and bathing.  It also includes maintaining sanitary facilities.

If a nursing home does not have proper hygiene, there may be many consequences.  For example:

  • Patients may develop bedsores
  • Contagious illnesses may spread rapidly through the nursing home
  • Lack of kitchen cleanliness can cause food-borne illnesses
  • Inadequate sanitation can lead to infestations of bedbugs, rodents, and other vermin

Proper sanitation includes frequently sterilizing all surfaces that patients or staff touch, including doorknobs and light switches, preferably with bleach.  This and other sanitation and hygiene techniques can prevent many infections and illnesses in congregate care settings.

Proper hygiene is also crucial to the dignity and self-respect of every individual, and is the right of every nursing home resident.

If you need support or have any questions, please contact us for immediate assistance.

References

“Preventing Healthcare-Associated Infections.”  November 16, 2015.  Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.United States Department of Health and Human Services.  Available at http://www.cdc.gov/hai/prevent/prevention.html

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