The facts about the safety of healthcare linen servicesRecent articles relating the death of five fragile pediatric patients in a Louisiana hospital to textiles at the facility has resulted in numerous questions about health care linens and their safety. ALM provides guidance on the mechanisms in place to prevent such future tragedy.
The following are provided regarding this issue:
- ALM responds on safety mechanisms in place for healthcare textile service
- Link to The New York Times article - April 28, 2014
- New Orleans Times Picayune article and editorial - April 23, 2014
- WVUE Fox 8 New Orleans article and video clip - April 21, 2014
- CDC information on Mucormycosis including outbreak in Joplin, MO following 2011 tornado
- Poster session from Presentation on Mucormycosis outbreak - 2012
Seeing Red is costly!
Placing blood-saturated reusable linen into red bags is a common practice. Common - but often wrong and quite costly.$ - Higher disposal cost for bio-hazardous waste disposal
$ - Loss of linen before the anticipated life-end of the textile
$ - Replacement cost for the textile
$ - Typical linen loss charges by laundry processor
ALM and the American Reusable Textile Association (ARTA) recently sought to clarify the correct procedures for bagging heavily blood soaked (contaminated) textiles. The confusion seemed to arise from hospitals whose practice was to err on the side of caution and trained staff to dispose of contaminated linen as Red Bag waste.
Preparation - Managing Textiles exposed to Ebola HF
Concerns over the Ebola Hemorrhagic Fever (Ebola HF) outbreak provides an opportunity for industry professionals to take a look at their infection control practices. Initial information released by the CDC is provided here and updates will be posted as they are released.
Given the way the virus is spread there is minimal risk to our industry IF our practices are in line with current recommended guidance.
- Summary guide for Ebola & Textiles
- Face Shields for Ebola exposed textiles
- Recommendations from the CDC on Ebola
- CDC's Q & A on Ebola
- Ebola as a Select Agent
Ebola EF is classified as an "Select Agent". This designation requires coordination between multiple agencies (i.e. EPA, DHHS, USDA, etc.) and as a result has resulted in a slight delay for information related to healthcare laundries not located at the hospital they serve. As additional information becomes available from the CDC in this area we will update the website and notify ALM members.
In the meantime textile care services professionals should review of infection control & prevention practices in line with the information provided.
Visitors can view the discussion forum but only ALM members can login and pose your questions regarding Ebola and Textile Care Services as well as share how your operation has implemented Ebola practices.