Servicon recently completed a two-month study on the best cleaning methodology for hospital environmental services (EVS). The study compared three different cleaning protocols used by Servicon’s hospital EVS workers to determine which might be most effective. The study was conducted in a real-life hospital setting to ensure the procedures and protocols are those used by hospital cleaning services technicians and EVS providers like Servicon.
Below are the three methodologies studied.
- Protocol A used a quaternary ammonium (quat)-based disinfectant with a launderable microfiber cloth. The formula was left on the surface for the manufacturer’s recommended dwell time (10 minutes).
- Protocol B used a ready-to-use (RTU) hydrogen peroxide formula with a launderable microfiber cloth. The formula was left on the surface for the product’s recommended dwell time (three minutes).
- Protocol C used a hypochlorous acid solution in concentrated tablet form with a single-use microfiber cloth. The formula was left on the surface for the recommended dwell time (four minutes).
Below are the relevant procedures the EVS for hospital workers followed to ensure the reliability of the study findings.
- All three chemistries studied are on the EPA’s List N of formulas effective against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.
- Trained staff collected samples using a template.
- The samples were sent to an independent laboratory for testing and result interpretation.
- The study included swabbing high-touch areas before and after each protocol in three types of rooms: patient rooms, restrooms, and specialty rooms.
- The study used launderable microfiber cloths in Protocol A and B and single-use microfiber cloths in Protocol C, following Servicon’s standard practices.
- Collection times and areas varied slightly due to EVS schedules being disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Best Protocols for Hospital EVS Depends on Various Factors
The Servicon study found that all three protocols work equally well, with the differences in efficacy being scientifically insignificant. This finding highlights the fact that other factors should be weighed when choosing the best protocols for hospital EVS. Considerations such as:
- Different environments require different cleaning and disinfection protocols depending on their use, occupancy, need, and risk. For example, EVS providers should favor hydrogen peroxide or hypochlorous acid solutions over quats for use in patient rooms whenever possible since quats are harsher chemicals and can cause lung and skin irritation.
- EPA-registered disinfectants perform equally well when used as directed; however, specific application protocols and real-life usage can impact results.
- The environment, sustainability, cost, and other factors should be considered in the choice of cleaning and disinfection protocol.
Download the full whitepaper, Choose the Best Cleaning & Disinfecting Protocol for Your Healthcare Facility to learn more about the study.
EVS Provider Backed by Science
At Servicon, we make sure our cleaning and disinfection procedures are based on scientific analysis, factual data, and real-world testing. Our partnership with The Infection Prevention Strategy (TIPS) gives us access to an outstanding network of epidemiologists, scientists, and other specialists. These field experts help us continually test and validate our methodology, chemistries, processes, and products to ensure optimal infection prevention.