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Environmental Infection Prevention and Control in Oral Healthcare Settings

Course Number: 363

Cleaning and Disinfection Strategies for Housekeeping Surfaces

Housekeeping surfaces with frequent hand contact such as doorknobs, chair arms, hangers, and anything else that people may come in contact with should be cleaned on a regular basis.19 Horizontal surfaces in routine patient-care areas with infrequent hand contact such as windowsills, and hard-surface floors require cleaning on a regular basis and when soiled or spills occur. Extraordinary cleaning and decontamination of floors in healthcare settings is unwarranted.1 Cleaning the walls, blinds, and window curtains is recommended when they are visibly soiled.1

Housekeeping surfaces should be cleaned with soap and water or a detergent/disinfectant.1,2 The methods and frequency of cleaning should be determined by policy.2 Cost, safety, product-surface compatibility, and acceptability by staff are the main criteria for selecting an agent. The manufacturers’ instructions for product use should be followed.1 Consult the products’ safety data sheets (SDS) to determine precautions to be taken during product use.9 Personal protective equipment (PPE) used during cleaning and housekeeping procedures should be appropriate for the task.5