Healthcare workers discussing pest control plan

Sanitation as a Science: Protecting Healthcare Facilities from Pests

From patient rooms to cafeterias, healthcare facilities provide food, water and shelter that can attract pests. And if their activity isn’t controlled, these pests can pose serious health risks to patients, as well as damage a facility’s reputation.

Establishing an effective pest management program is the first step to controlling a potential infestation, and one of the fundamental components of a successful pest control program is ensuring sanitary conditions throughout your facility. (Read more about the fundamentals of pest management for healthcare by downloading our free guide.)

To accomplish this, the best practice is to implement an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program that focuses on proactive strategies like sanitation, exclusion, facility maintenance and ongoing inspections to help reduce the introduction of pests. Additionally, in healthcare facilities like yours, you may be subject to Joint Commission standards that require you to follow clear hygiene guidelines and implement stringent cleaning protocols for a safer environment.

Your staff members are on-site every day, which means they play an important role in minimizing pest problems. It’s important that you work with your pest control professional to train your staff on inspection practices that can help identify pest activity before it becomes an infestation.

Want to help make sure your healthcare environment stays clean and deterrent to pests? Integrate these 7 simple sanitation tips into your operations:

  1. Keep storage and receiving areas – as well as trash handling areas – clean, well-lit, uncluttered dry and well-ventilated.
  2. Make sure garbage cans are emptied and liners are changed daily.
  3. Find and eliminate water sources around moisture-prone areas.
  4. Check and clean floor drains on a regular basis.
  5. Keep food sealed and stored properly, particularly in kitchens, cafeterias and employee break rooms.
  6. Clean up all food, water and other liquid spills immediately.
  7. Regularly clean high-volume areas like waiting rooms and lobbies.

In addition to strengthening your sanitation process with an eye to pest prevention, you should also know how pests gain access into healthcare facilities, what pests are most problematic, where activity is most likely to develop and steps to help prevent it. Download our authoritative guide, Fundamentals of Healthcare Pest Control, to learn how to diagnose the symptoms of pest presence faster, and even better, help reduce pest activity in the first place.


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