KGH shines in independent cleaning audit

News / Work Place & Environment
By Peter Jeffrey

Westech awards the hospital with a score that hits our corporate target

From our Operating Rooms, to our inpatient rooms, to our busy lobbies, Kingston General Hospital recently put our cleaning performance to the test and we came up with some impressive results. 

Independent auditors from Westech were at KGH for four days at the end of April and during their stay they audited the cleanliness of 258 different areas of the hospital. 

By the time they were done checking chairs, beds, railings, washrooms, windows, floors and more, we achieved a score of 85.07 per cent against the Healthcare Facility Cleaning Audit Standards. That puts us just over our long-standing target of 85 per cent for the first time.

“We were ecstatic when were learned of our results as we’ve been on a journey over the past several years to really improve the service we provide,” says Bryan Harvey, Director of Environmental and Transportation Services. “It’s a remarkable improvement over where we were several years ago.”

KGH has been using Westech since 2011 and in our first audit we scored just under 70 per cent. Since then we’ve been carrying out Westech audits twice per-year and studying the feedback closely. The positive results can be attributed in part to some recently implemented scheduling changes. Environmental Service Assistants are now being allocated more efficiently. Rather than having four or five different people cleaning different parts of a unit at different times, one person is now responsible for all of the cleaning in a section of the unit, including patient rooms, floors, nursing stations and stairwells for example. This has increased accountability and is allowing for better tracking of the assigned work to ensure all areas are cleaned to a high standard and on schedule.

In addition to these changes, we also conduct our own internal audits on a daily, weekly and monthly basis to track our performance and look for opportunities for improvement.

 “We spend a lot of time on the floors with our employees auditing their work and helping them to be more successful,” says Harvey. “As part of this, people are also being recognized for their efforts and are taking pride in their work. For example, when we posted the audit results on our staff bulletin board, people were gathering around for days to see what the scores were for their areas and to congratulate each other.” 

Across the board our cleaning scores were up, but the audit also showed some ongoing opportunities for improvement. In the coming months, some of our diagnostic areas, our Emergency Department and other busy public spaces will be areas of focus.

“Our clinical areas are now cleaner than ever. The challenge now will be to keep our hospital consistently above the standard in all areas so everyone can see the difference we are making,” says Harvey. “The journey will continue and all of us in every department share in the responsibility to keep KGH clean.”