Sponsored content: Environmental services: More than ‘housekeeping’

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ICFP Media for St. Mary's Hospital and Clinics

SMHC Expert this week: Jessica Meyers, Manager Environmental Services

“People tend to view my department as being the ‘low man on the totem pole’. The truth is, we are at the top of it,” said Jessica Meyers, manager of environmental services at St. Mary’s Hospital and Clinics in Cottonwood. “Without a clean room, doctors can’t perform their duties, serious infections such as staph, MRSA, and influenza spread and germs would be carried from one patient to the next, and the entire hospital would come to a standstill.”

“One of the biggest challenges we face is being aware of the ever-changing rules, regulations and guidelines. For instance, our laundry has to be done at specific temps to kill germs. Rags and mops can be done in-house, but we still have to meet the temperature criteria. The rest is sent out to be commercially cleaned and disinfected. We also have to know the proper ratio of chemicals to use,” continued Meyers. “More is not always better. A certain amount of bleach is all it takes to kill germs, and going over that ratio just adds more chemicals, not benefits.”

“One of the best things about working in environmental services is that we get to work with almost every single person in the hospitals and clinics, from the employees to the patients. You have to be aware of people’s needs and their emotional state, since we are often seeing them at their most vulnerable. There is always an opportunity to make someone’s time here a little bit better.”

St. Mary's--Neighborhood Experts

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