At this time of the year, I usually risk Grinch-related epithets and write an article or blog post on facility safety concerns from holiday decorations. But I just came across an article on holiday decorations and infection control concerns from the land of Dickens, A Christmas Carol, and yes, Scrooge.
In NursingTimes.net , Julie Hughes, a nurse consultant infection control/lecturer, in NHS Foundation Trust in Great Britain, acknowledges that that Christmas decorations are not only potential facility safety concerns, but infection control challenges in clinical areas as well.
Admitting that there is little available evidence either way on decorations related to infection control, Hughes does say that holiday decorations are difficult to clean “particularly in the event of norovirus outbreaks which are particularly challenging at this time of year.”
Hughes recommends this commonsense approach to not compromising infection control concerns by avoiding:
- Live trees with soil
- Glass baubles
- Cloth toys or anything that cannot be cleaned
Also, make sure the placement of decorations in mental health and pediatric settings are suitable from a health and safety perspective, even though in metal health and elder care “decorations are good for orientating patients to time and place,” says Hughes.