When we ask about Legionella checks in hotels, many do not know what it is or how to check for it.
Previously Legionella was most common in Europe in tourist areas which were known to have a low occupancy outside the peak season- For example Greece – Every year most accommodation would open at the end of April and close at the end of October. The weather was cooler and the majority of flights were chartered on a seasonal basis only. Arriving beginning of May though to the end of October.
So in Mid April the hoteliers would start to open they their up their hotels, apartments, restaurants, bars etc.
Rooms were aired, mattresses on balconies wherever you looked!
However, what they were never educated to do is thoroughly cleanse all the water systems which had been stagnant for 5/ 6 months. Therefore it was not uncommon to find many guests who started to experience symptoms of legionnaires after a stay in their property. This is how the ECDC was formed in Europe.
Legionella just loves warm stagnant water, it thrives in these conditions.
Now, is the perfect time for you to learn about Legionella and Legionnaires disease.
With lower occupancy rooms will be left empty and many of your water systems not functioning to full capacity.
There is a 15 point hotel checklist created by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC). Your hotel may only have 5 or 6 points, but older hotels may have 10-15
If you would like a copy of this guide which also has clear instructions on how to set up your own individual legionella management plan just drop me a line with your email and I will send it to you.
This will help you identify where the high risk points are in your property and how to set up a legionella plan for your premises if you don’t already have one in place.
Yes please send me the plan today…..
Just as Chefs and kitchen staff use different coloured chopping boards for different foods to avoid cross contamination - it can also be applied other areas of your operation-
Any areas which involve cleaning and sanitizing will all benefit from this colour coding method from kitchens to guest rooms to public areas.
Have you ever done spot checks on your cleaning staff ?
You may notice that they are cleaning several rooms, possible every room with the same cloth/s.
You may also notice how dirty these cloths are – Seriously I have personally seen a whole room cleaned with one cloth before they proceeded to dry the wet floor with the same cloth….then moved on to the next room.
There are many advantages to developing and integrating colour coding into your existing program, including to:
Differentiate For Specific Tasks And Departments
Typically, a small handful of colours are used to clean different departments in a facility or for specific tasks or jobs.
Although there technically is not a “colour standard” this is a example of a guideline you might wish to base yours on.
Red: Used in areas with a higher risk of cross-contamination and spread of infection — most commonly for cleaning restroom/ Bathroom areas including toilets and urinals.
Yellow: Used for cleaning objects and surfaces in rooms and lower risk areas of restrooms including sinks, vanity units etc.
Green: Used in areas where food is handled and prepared
Blue: Used in lower risk areas such as common areas and for general purpose cleaning of surfaces such as glass and mirrors.
When implementing your colour-coded program, you may want to consider matching the colour of your towels and cloths, rags and mops with the colour of the chemicals spray bottle or buckets you are using to clean.
In the kitchen the Chefs use matching coloured knifes and chopping boards – so they know they have to use a red knife to cut meat products on on the red chopping board and not on the yellow chopping board - so as to avoid contamination.
Using the right kind of cloths and Mops for the job.
Microfiber is a lint-free synthetic material that has been around for nearly a decade and has become one of the most preferred cleaning materials used in the professional cleaning industry. Microfiber is constructed with millions of microscopic hooks that attract, absorb and remove all kinds of dirt, dust and bacteria from surfaces. Microfiber traps the dirt, dust and bacteria until it is washed, so the same cloth or mop head can be used for a longer period of time — in the area of hundreds of washes — when compared to traditional cleaning cloths and mops.
Microfiber is also popular because of its versatility and ability to clean with or without the use of chemicals. Cloths and mops are safe on most surfaces from counters, floors, walls and windows to electronics, wood, stainless steel and stone. Microfiber cloths and mop pads are available in many colours, sizes and styles. Or if you are on a low budget purchase one colour then add coloured tags -
There is a big difference between cleaning (Washing) and sanitizing. ...... And also sanitizing and disinfecting
So which is best for your industry ?
Well firstly your cleaning procedure is where you get the visible dirt off, when you sanitize you add a protective layer which reduces the risk of contamination or bacteria to a safe level.
Now- lets stop right there for a moment - Both of the above are useless if you are using dirty cloths, sponges, water in the process....?? Oh yes its a classic -
After cleaning it's good to sanitize where possible, call it a double measure to ensure your cooking utensils and dishes are protected from microbes. Sanitizer, however is only good for certain things - Sanitizing is best for surfaces that don't typically come into contact with seriously dangerous bacteria, or those that are best left without contact with powerful chemicals. Think kitchen equipment, Chopping boards, Plates, cutlery, surfaces used for preparation etc.
Disinfecting kills everything on a particular surface and is not suitable for any item which will possibly come into contact with food, including dishes, pans, cutlery etc. think will this possible come into contact with touch which can then be transferred into the body.
Disinfection is particularly good for the big masses, particularly those involving blood, body fluids etc to prevent the spread of deadly germs.
So sanitizing lowers the level of the germs on the surface and disinfection kills all of them.
Check what is being used in your hotel in the kitchen, housekeeping etc....
For a free copy of our guide on how to clean and sanitize correctly contact us now - you will be surprised .....
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