According to the World Health Organisation, “The emergence of life-threatening infections such as severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and re-emerging infectious diseases like plague and tuberculosis have highlighted the need for efficient infection control programmes in all healthcare settings and capacity building for healthcare workers so they can implement them. An infection control programme puts together various practices which, when used appropriately, restrict the spread of infection.”
An essential part of any infection control programme is the maintenance of the hospital environment. Emrill Services - one of the largest facilities management (FM) companies in the UAE with over 7,000 personnel - has successfully developed an intensive FM training programme to ensure compliance with Joint Commission International (JCI) accreditation cleaning standards at clinics and hospitals in the UAE. JCI provides the basis for accreditation of clinics and hospitals throughout the world, supplying organisations with the information needed to pursue or maintain patient safety, performance and improvement and is considered the gold standard in global healthcare. According to the JCI Standards Manual, in the Facility Management Program Monitoring Standard FMS.10, hospitals must collect and analyse data from each of the FM programmes to support planning for replacing or upgrading medical technology, equipment and systems, and reducing risks in the environment.
Emrill holds the FM soft services and MEP contract for 10 Mediclinic clinics across the UAE, including the flagship Dubai Mall clinic. Developing the structured training programme by JCI standard resulted from the following industry need:
Emrill was presented with a major challenge - how to ensure all cleaning and FM soft services at Mediclinic locations throughout UAE remain compliant to JCI accreditation standards. To upskill Emrill employees and ensure compliance as part of its accreditation process, Mediclinic needed to ensure its suppliers complied with JCI standards, including its FM partner. This did not extend to product suppliers since the audits are applicable only to Emrill employees (but Mediclinic suppliers may be subject to other requirements)
Together with Mediclinic, Emrill developed an intensive, FM training programme with real life videos as the medium to ensure compliance with JCI standards. The initial one-week programme comprised intensive familiarisation tours by Mediclinic personnel, specific clinicalarea training, classroom and video training, and on-going supervision to ensure the proper maintenance of active work areas. Assessment of trained staff was conducted by JCI-accredited Mediclinic staff as part of an interview process requiring all cleaning staff to correctly respond to a series of questions and scenarios in the following situations:
• Code Yellow
• Bio hazards spill
• Water dispenser hygiene
• Hand hygiene
• Personal Protective Equipment
To date, the programme has been successful, and 52 Emrill staff have been trained and passed the final JCI interview process by JCI auditors. The success of this programme relies on an intensive training and safety-first approach to ensure standards are maintained for the protection of all clinical staff and patients alike, while reducing the ever present risk of cross-contamination. It is conducted once during induction and further every six months at the site level.
Camelia Akkela, Manager - Quality & Nursing at Mediclinic Middle East, commented, “Mediclinic Middle East prides itself on creating a safe and comfortable atmosphere for its patients, visitors and staff. As an outsourced service provider, Emrill, through their commitment, ability to coordinate with the nursing team and other team members, and manage duties efficiently, provides vital housekeeping support to Mediclinic Middle East’s network of clinics. Emrill helps us serve our patients in the best way we can, comply with the rules of regulatory bodies and occupational health and safety, and achieve the required international accreditation tandards.”
Marc Daly, Head of Operations at Emrill,
commented, “2016 was a year in which we took significant strides towards a step change in consistency, compliance and patient experience. Our people continue to make significant contributions beyond their day job like taking accountability in events such as a fire, JCI audits and so on. Delivering a great patient experience is at the heart of everything we do.”