Dr Domingos FernandesIntensive Care UnitCentro Hospitalar de Bragança
What is the average time of stay at Centro Hospitalar de Bragança ?
The day-to-day pace at Centro Hospitalar de Bragança is very dynamic and most beds are kept occupied throughout the year. Intensive care patients stay an average of eight days. That time frame can be longer depending on whether the patient has had surgery or other complications.
How do effective infection control methods help combat overcapacity ?
All patients have the right to top quality care. When we are overcapacity, we often add beds to the wards to accommodate more patients. A member of our staff is always available to manually clean and decontaminate using GLOSAIR – this helps turn beds around quickly and safely for new patients.
What is at the heart of the deep clean initiative ?
When GLOSAIR was initially shown to us in 2008, I didn’t hesitate to say: Yes, we will test it! We were the first hospital in Portugal to adopt this new technology, and I felt compelled to prove its effectiveness by running a study. The results were reassuring and very positive. At first my colleagues were skeptical, but once they were able to see the effects of the decontamination, they wanted more access to GLOSAIR. We quickly realized sharing two machines between three hospitals wasn’t practical, so we purchased a third one. It is vital for my team to ensure beds are turned around efficiently and safely. Occasionally we even use GLOSAIR in between surgeries if necessary. It’s an efficient system and that’s why it works for us.
Why is a clean environment so important to patients and staff?
Visually and clinically proven cleanliness gives our patients confidence that their overall experience at the hospital will be first class. The staff are also more comfortable working in a cleaner environment.
Many places in the haemodialysis room and other rooms are very hard to reach. After the study, we found that the heater grills in the patient rooms were highly infected, despite traditional manual clean efforts. GLOSAIR was able to bring the pathogen numbers down to zero.
Who is responsible for the day-to-day use of the GLOSAIR system ?
Trained environmental service staff from each hospital unit are responsible for cleaning the rooms and operating GLOSAIR. The machine is fully programmable and can be operated remotely. Since we use it throughout the hospital, it is important that it is easy to transport.
Our environmental service staff attended a course on how to use GLOSAIR. I am then responsible for keeping up the training in the hospital. In the operating and critical care units, GLOSAIR is used every week and also ad-hoc when required. A total of ten nurses have also been trained to oversee the work of environmental service teams.
What motivates the infection control team ?
I look forward to keeping the number of HAIs low at our hospital, protecting both our patients and our staff. Infection prevention above anything else is our main motivation!
Our study results are reassuring for our staff, showing that GLOSAIR is effective in combating pathogens. Yet for us, the practitioners, the main reason why we use it so widely in the hospitals is that we can easily and quickly decontaminate the rooms, which helps us admit more patients safely.