Operations & Processing

Various operational models provide textile services in and/or for hospitals, long-term care & assisted living, clinics, hotels, restaurants, resorts, universities, military, sports complexes, and prisons.

More operations and processing information is available exclusively to ALM members on ALM Networks.


Laundry Operational Models

Commercial Laundry

Commercial laundries are freestanding companies that supply laundered items, such as uniforms, gowns, table linens, bed linens, towels/terry, cleanroom apparel, and mops to various other industries. These for-profit companies are also referred to as industrial laundries. Typical clients include private industry, healthcare, food-service (F & B for restaurants) and hospitality (lodging, hotel) establishments.

  • Voluntary accreditation & certification programs have been developed to aid consumers in decision-making regarding services provided.
  • Hospitals who utilize commercial laundry operations are required by federal authority to provide regular oversight for compliance with hospital policy and state public health statutes.

On-Premise Laundry

Often referred to as an OPL, the laundry is operated in the hospital, hotel, or university as a department or division, and  this was the original model for the textile care industry. Economies of scale and tightening healthcare budgets saw a movement away from this model around the turn of the 21st century. However, it is not uncommon for OPL operations to remain in long-term care environments, rural hospitals, and hotels/resorts, and they are subject to the applicable state licensing in addition to federal healthcare requirements.

Cooperative Laundry

This laundry model began in the 1970s, growing out of the rise of healthcare systems or as a joint venture between multiple healthcare institutions. In this model, a shared authority or board maintains the role of decision-making and oversight of the fiscal and quality aspects of the operation. The term "central laundry" is often synonymous with a cooperative; however, with the central laundry, the ownership lies with the parent hospital providing services for other similar customers within a geographic location.