Infection Control And Prevention
Date: 21-06-2016

Tatjana Ahmed, Housekeeping Manager, Grand Hyatt Dubai, talks about the importance of infection control and prevention in housekeeping.

We know that protecting our employees and guests is our number one priority and that an illness caused through an infection in our hotel will seriously damage one’s reputation and cost the business millions of dollars! Dubai is a Global hub and is exposed to health risks from travelers coming from across the world. With strong inbound from Asia, Africa, Middle East and Far East, the likelihood of spreading infections is higher here. As housekeepers, it is our responsibility to provide a safe environment for our employees and guests, which includes adequate infection prevention and control procedures. Taking precaution and ensuring that we have the right tools and equipment to give a speedy response to illness and infections will be key.

Cross contamination can be potentially life threatening. It is important that cleaning personnel know exactly how to avoid this issue. Therefore, we need to look at products that are more effective and support hygienic cleaning. So what does it take to better control infections in a hotel environment?



High-touch surfaces

1. Examine the surfaces which potentially are responsible for cross contamination such as the high-touch surfaces

  • Remote controls
  • Elevator buttons
  • Light switches
  • Door handles
  • Hand rails
  • Smart tech devices

2. Look out for new cleaning products that might be more effective in removing bacteria than your existing ones.
3. It is important, that before any disinfection or sanitation takes place, a proper cleaning process needs to precede as organic and mineral deposits culture bacteria, fungus and viruses. Once completed, the sanitation process can be applied.
4. Use colour-coded microfibre cloth and change the cloth frequently.
5. Teach your staff how to fold the micro fiber cloth in order to maximise its usage.

Mattress hygiene

Analysing samples of 8-year old mattresses showed a variety of bacteria, yeast and mould that thrive the material. These particles can provoke allergies, cause infections and worsen existing lung conditions. Finding bacteria such as E-coli indicates the presence of fecal contamination, which shows that if someone was carrying an infectious disease, it could be passed on to someone else sharing the bed or using the bed another time. Therefore providing a hygienic, washable encasing to protect your mattress as well as your guest is a must.

Floor cleaning

Cleaning and disinfection needs to be elevated out of the traditional mop and bucket perception into a technical process undertaken by skilled workers.

Glass cleaning

  • A high-temperature glass washer needs to be installed in easy to access locations for your staff to wash the used glass ware of guest rooms.
  • Provide sloped drain boards for drainage and drip drying of the glasses.
  • Never towel dry glasses! Again, risk of cross contamination!

Hygiene verification

In order to prove the efficiency of the cleaning and disinfection and to ensure that all bacteria has been removed, a swab test with testing devices like the System Sure Plus will offer reassurance.

Such systems are effective not only in training your staff, but also during routine checks in rooms and common areas such as the gym, spa and rest rooms.