Health Risks for Visitors in a Hospital
March 28, 2019 Leave a Comment
Have you ever gone to visit someone in the hospital healthy only to find yourself sick a couple of days after leaving? Have you ever gone to the hospital sick with one illness only to come out worse than when you went in? What about a quick trip to the emergency room? Have you ever gone to the emergency room for one thing and brought home another illness? Chances are, you answered yes to these questions if you've ever spent any time in a hospital setting. Dr. Harlan Krumholz, a cardiologist and professor of medicine at the Yale School of Medicine, has given this a name. he calls it "post-hospital syndrome," which simply describes a situation in which there is a period of increased risk for illness after a hospital stay, in many cases leading to re-hospitalization.
This same situation can apply to someone healthy just visiting someone in the hospital. The results are not always sever enough to require hospitalization or even admission to the hospital, but the risk is certainly there. In fact, it is more common than you might think. A government study in 2009 found that almost 20 percent of Medicare patients discharged from a hospital (about 2.6 million seniors in the U.S.) are likely to get an acute medical issue within the 30 days of a hospital visit, with many requiring additional time in the hospital. In many cases, the new medical issue has nothing to with the patient's original medical issue.
Who is at Risk for Getting Sick from a Hospital Visit?
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 in 25 patients each day will contract at least one infection they got while in the hospital. According to the CDC, about "648,000 people in the U.S. develop infections during a hospital stay, and about 75,000 die." Of course, going to the emergency room, visiting someone in the hospital, or even being a patient doesn't guarantee you will get sick or sicker. While everyone is at risk, not everyone who goes to a hospital, or even to a doctor's office, will become ill. As in many cases, the elderly, small children, and those with pre-existing health issues are more prone to getting sick just by visiting a hospital.
You may be wondering how it's possible to get sick in a place where the goal is to make people well. Most of us believe that hospitals are cleaned, sanitized, and disinfected better than most other businesses. It's true that hospitals take care to stay as clean as possible, but even the most thorough cleaning and sanitizing routine can be hard to manage on such a large scale. There are airborne viruses and bacteria everywhere, on surfaces, on utensils and dishes from the cafeteria, and on just about anything that can be touched or transferred in a hospital setting. Airborne diseases are particularly troublesome because they are difficult to control and can be spread through sneezing and coughing.
In an effort to keep the premises clean and sanitized, hospitals use commercial cleaning products that are extremely powerful. Unfortunately, the power of these commercial cleaning and sanitizing products come from the inclusion of bleaches and other chemicals. These products can themselves be harmful to patients or visitors to the hospital, especially in people who may already have issues with breathing.
A Better Way to Clean, Sanitize, and Disinfect Hospital Settings
We can all agree it's important to keep hospital settings clean, sanitized, and disinfected. The natural inclination to find the most powerful products you can may lead to those containing harsh and toxic chemicals in the misguided belief this is the only way to kill the bacteria and germs that can cause illness. This not only holds true with hospitals, but for schools and other commercial establishments. People automatically assume it takes toxic chemical cleaners to kill bacteria and viruses.
At GenEon, we have a better way. We have worked hard to develop cleaning, sanitizing, and disinfecting products that are safer and less toxic than those harsh chemicals found in commercial-strength cleaning products. Our products are made using water, natural minerals and electricity in a process known as on-site generation. The OSG process is an effective way to produce powerful cleaning, disinfecting, and sanitizing products. Natural minerals like salt are a compound comprised of sodium and chloride. During this process, sodium ions are positively charged and chloride ions are negatively charged. Our on-site generators then expose these ions to a low electrical charge. The positive side of the charge electrochemically converts the chloride ion (Cl) to hypochlorous acid (HOCl), which is a powerful sanitizer, and the negative side of the charge electrochemically converts the sodium ion (Na) into sodium hydroxide (NaOH), which is a cleaning compound commonly found in soaps and detergents. How our on-site generators differ is that our system is a Blended Stream System that incorporates both versions in the same solution. The hypochlorous acid is represented as Free Available Chlorine (FAC) with 80-200 times the sanitizing power of chlorine bleach, making it the perfect solution for cleaning, sanitizing, and disinfecting.
Not only is on-site generation safer, it is cost-effective as well. Consumers make only the products they need, meaning there is less waste. On-site generation also eliminates the need to store potentially harmful products in the hospital, helping to create a safer, easier-to-control situation.
At GenEon, we carry a range of on-site generators, including the Instaflow
system, which is ideal for creating a high volume of cleaning and sanitizing products, and our portable, convenient Immerse-A-Clean Wand
, which is a handheld device for creating our all-natural, sustainable cleaning and sanitizing products on demand.
We also have a line of advanced delivery systems that make our cleaning products easy to apply in all settings, from large, commercial areas to residential homes. These include our Mist delivery systems and our compact New Mist 2.5
. These advanced delivery systems, used in conjunction with our cleaning, sanitizing, and disinfection solutions, provide the ideal way to keep hospitals, doctor's offices, and other medical facilities clean. They are also perfect for schools, office buildings, and other commercial settings where the possibility of the spread of disease is possible.
At GenEon, we have the best solutions available, and we continue to develop better products all the time. That's because we do not believe the cleaning and sanitizing solutions that consumers use should be potentially hazardous. With our products, you can be sure you're using a safer, less-toxic, and equally-effective alternative to industrial strength cleaning products.
If you are interested in learning more about how to avoid health risks for visitors in a hospital or how to get GenEon's sustainable, cost-effective cleaning systems into your medical facility, call us at 866.217.0205. We will be more than happy to introduce you to a better, safer way to keep hospitals and doctor's offices as free of bacteria and viruses as possible.
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