Laundry Training. How soiled or contaminated laundry is handled is very important for the safety and well-being of residents and staff. What is the difference between soiled and contaminated laundry? Laundry is soiled if it has been handled or used.
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How soiled or contaminated laundry is handled is very important for the safety and well-being of residents and staff.
What is the difference between soiled and contaminated laundry?
Laundry is soiled if it has been handled or used.
Laundry iscontaminated if there is blood or other body fluids (semen, vaginal secretions, saliva with visible blood, etc.) present on the item.
If a person has an infectious disease (hepatitis, MRSA, other multiple drug-resistant organisms) or is on contact precautions, then their feces or vomitus also causes laundry to be contaminated.
To be safe from potentially infectious materials, as well as for good hygiene practices, you should always wear gloves when handling soiled or contaminated laundry. You should also remove or change to clean gloves before handling clean laundry.
Laundry at JIRDC consists of personal clothing belonging to the people who live here.
Laundry also includes state-owned items such as linens, towels, washcloths, and clothing protectors.
Dirty linens are to be placed in laundry bags and closed at the area of use instead of carrying them uncovered to other locations.
All bathing areas in the homes have containers for soiled laundry.
Personal clothing of the people who live at JIRDC is washed in the homes. If clothing is contaminated and can not be washed immediately, it must be placed in a red bag.
Clothing that is contaminated with blood or other body fluids should be removed immediately and washed in the area. This includes both resident and staff clothing.
NOTE: If your clothing becomes contaminated it must be washed at JIRDC. Your supervisor will assist you in getting clothing from the Treasure Shop if you do not have a change of clothes.
All home bathing areas have separate containers for clothes and linens that have been contaminated by blood and other potentially infectious body fluids.
State-owned items that are contaminated with blood and body fluids are washed at Broughton Hospital.
Contaminated laundry that is being sent to Broughton Hospital must be placed inside a water-soluble bag.
The water-soluble bag is then placed inside a heavy-duty red plastic bag.
The following steps outline how to wash personal clothes that are NOT soiled with feces or vomitus.
(Clothing that is soiled with feces or vomitus must be rinsed prior to placing it in the washing machine. These steps will be outlined later.)
Clothes are to be separated by color as follows:
Clothes should also be sorted by water temperature to be used. Check labels in clothing for washing instructions.
Set washer to desired wash cycle.
Fill washing machine with water.
Add laundry detergent.
The amount of detergent to be used depends on the machine. Each machine will have specific instructions regarding how much detergent to use.
Put sorted clothing loosely into the machine.
DO NOT OVERLOAD.
NOTE: Dark fabrics should be washed together. White and light-colored fabrics should be washed together.
Close the lid or door of the washer.
The machine will start washing.
Many people who live at JIRDC are incontinent (unable to control their bladder or bowels). Even with the use of disposable briefs and/or cloth briefs, clothing will become soiled with urine or feces.
Personal clothing protectors may also become soiled with food or vomitus.
Soiled clothing should be removed and placed on a towel or in a red bag (if contaminated) until you are finished assisting the person with changing his or her clothes.
The following steps outline how to prepare soiled or contaminated clothes for washing. These steps begin after the person is clean and out of the bathroom.
Staff must wear gloves.
Staff must rinse clothing soiled with feces or vomitus. The photo illustrates rinsing clothing in a hopper.
If a hopper is not available, rinse the clothing in a commode or in an area where a sprayer can be used.
Carefully inspect all rinsed clothing. No solid feces or other body waste such as vomitus should be visible on the clothing that will be placed in the washing machine.
Clean hopper or commode with an EPA-approved disinfectant (Spectr-O-Cide).
If the washing machine is available, wash soiled clothes immediately.
If the washing machine is not available, rinse the clothes and place them in a red biohazard bag to be washed later.
If a person has an infectious disease (hepatitis, MRSA, other multiple drug-resistant organisms) or is on contact precautions, clothes should be washed separately.
The washing machine must then be disinfected after the clothes finish washing. The procedure for sanitizing machines with Clorox follows.
The washing machines in each home are used to wash the clothes of all of the people living in that home. More than one person’s clothing are being washed in the same washer.
In order to prevent cross contamination, it is the policy of JIRDC that every washer be sanitized at least once a day.
Washers will also be sanitized between loads when clothes that belong to someone with hepatitis, MRSA, other multiple drug-resistant organisms or with contact precautions are washed.
Each home at JIRDC will establish a time to sanitize the washer(s) in that home.
A recording sheet to document the date, time, and staff name will be placed at each washer.
In addition, a “Washer Being Sanitized – Do Not Use” tag will also be readily available near the washer.
The following steps outline the proper procedure for sanitizing washing machines.
Set washer to desired wash cycle.
Fill the empty washer (no clothes inside) with water.
Designated staff (the person who will be sanitizing the washer) puts on gloves and protective goggles.
Designated staff measures 2 cups of Clorox bleach and pours it into the washer.
Designated staff closes the lid or door of the washer so that the machine starts washing.
It is critical that the washer completes the wash, rinse, and spin cycles.
Designated staff places a “Washer Being Sanitized – Do Not Use” tag on the washer.
This alerts all staff not to place any clothes in the washer during this wash cycle.
Designated staff completes the recording sheet.
The recording sheet requires the date and time that the washer was sanitized.
It also requires the name of the person who sanitized the washer.
Sanitization of the washer(s) in the home is included on the appropriate shift exchange checklist.
The checklist is signed off by the outgoing and incoming shift personnel each day.
Staff will report any foul odors that are detected from the washer(s) after a wash cycle to the Home Coordinator.
The Home Coordinator will make sure that a work order is completed.
Broughton Hospital is responsible for washing and drying towels, washcloths, sheets, blankets, clothing protectors, pink pads, and cloth briefs used by the people who live at JIRDC.
Broughton Hospital is also responsible for washing and drying comforters that belong to individuals and are their personal property.
Because comforters are personal property, it is critical that the marking room marks all comforters.
The marking room has a tag that will withstand the washing procedure without coming off. (Permanent markers wash off after two or three weeks.)
TIP: When purchasing comforters, buy a comforter that is a 50/50 blend. These withstand the washing and drying process used at Broughton.
REMEMBER: If an item is soiled or contaminated with feces or other human waste, it should be rinsed so that no solid human waste is left on the item.
If the item was used with a person who has an infectious disease (hepatitis, MRSA, other multiple drug-resistant organisms) or is on contact precautions, then after rinsing, the item should be placed in a water-soluble bag and a red bag.