1711. Knowledge, Attitudes, and Practices of Environmental Service Workers Related to Environmental Cleaning and Healthcare-Associated Infections (HAI)
Session: Poster Abstract Session: Infection Prevention: Cleaning and Disinfection
Saturday, October 10, 2015
Room: Poster Hall
  • 1711 EVS Survey REALISE ID Week Poster FINAL.pdf (130.5 kB)
  • Background: Environmental Service workers (ESW) play a critical role in preventing pathogen transmission in hospitals. The objective of this study was to evaluate ESW knowledge, attitudes, and practices regarding cleaning and disinfection and to identify barriers encountered by ESW to inform efforts to optimize environmental cleaning and patient safety.

    Methods: ESW at 5 acute care hospitals were invited to participate in a 32-item voluntary, anonymous survey in February-March 2015. Questions included Likert scales and multi-select options.

    Results: The survey was completed by 327 (44%) of 741 ESW. Most agreed that they had been properly trained to perform daily (91%) and discharge (95%) cleaning and were “very confident” in their abilities to do so (80% and 88%, respectively), but 63% reported that it was “not always” clear what items ESW were responsible for cleaning. 86% agreed that their work is ”very important” to keep patients safe, but 55% reported that physicians and nurses “never or only sometimes” show appreciation for their work. 21% reported “often or always” worrying that they will get sick while cleaning patient rooms and 29% didn't know that germs can be found on healthcare workers' hands. Many (40%) reported “often or always” avoiding cleaning near patients to avoid disturbing them and that the over bed table was “often or always” too cluttered to clean. Respondents reported “often or always” having enough time to perform daily (70%) and discharge (80%) cleaning. 80% expressed interest in further education; the most commonly selected topics included “specific types of infections (C diff., MRSA, influenza, etc.)” (48%), “how patients get infections while in the hospital” (45%), and “how to prevent patients from getting infections while in the hospital” (41%).

    Conclusion: This survey of ESW at 5 acute care hospitals identified areas of strength and opportunities related to environmental cleaning and disinfection. Providing education to ESW about HAI epidemiology and prevention, reducing barriers that impede effective daily cleaning, and heightening other health care workers' recognition of the important role of ESW appear to be key opportunities to enhance the effectiveness of environmental cleaning and disinfection in hospitals.


    Daniel Bernstein, BA1, Elizabeth Salsgiver, MPH1, Matthew S. Simon, MD, MSc1,2, William Greendyke, MD3, Daniel Eiras, MD, MPH1, Masahiro Ito, ASQ-CSSBB, CMQ/OE, CHA2, Dean Caruso, BS2, Timothy Woodward, BS2, Odette Perriel, MS2, Lisa Saiman, MD, MPH, FSHEA2,3, E. Yoko Furuya, MD, MS2,3 and David P. Calfee, MD, MS, FIDSA, FSHEA1,2, (1)Weill Cornell Medical College, New York, NY, (2)New York Presbyterian Hospital, New York, NY, (3)Columbia University Medical Center, New York, NY


    D. Bernstein, None

    E. Salsgiver, None

    M. S. Simon, None

    W. Greendyke, None

    D. Eiras, None

    M. Ito, None

    D. Caruso, None

    T. Woodward, None

    O. Perriel, None

    L. Saiman, None

    E. Y. Furuya, None

    D. P. Calfee, None

    Findings in the abstracts are embargoed until 12:01 a.m. PDT, Wednesday Oct. 7th with the exception of research findings presented at the IDWeek press conferences.