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PTA Blog Talk

Cleaning the Department

Published June 30, 2010 4:54 PM by Jason Marketti

I have a bone to pick with state surveys. In the therapy department we are asked about how we clean our equipment and how often. We are also asked about how often we wash our hands when we see multiple patients in the gym.

My problem is that blood pressure cuffs are used throughout the facility and only require cleaning if they are visibly dirty, despite being on the arms of 150 people. Bacteria doesn't have to be visible to cause harm to patients - doesn't the survey team know this?

The hall rails are used by patients, family and staff, including the survey teams and do not seemed to be cleaned after each use. The phones in the facility are used by everyone and I rarely see these being wiped down; the same with computer keyboards and doorknobs. And don't get me started about the pens that are used and dropped and used again. I have seen a survey team pick up a dropped pen without washing it off. I also want to know who is responsible for cleaning the patient charts that everyone touches?

Whenever survey is in town I have questions like this but they are never answered and I am cautioned not to bring them up to the survey team. Yet no one in the facilities I have been in have answers. Do you?

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About this Blog


    Jason J. Marketti
    Occupation: Physical Therapist Assistant
    Setting: San Jacinto, CA
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