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Partners in cleaning

Public Partners in Monitoring Cleaning Services

A cleaning monitoring initiative developed by NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde has received national recognition from Health Facilities Scotland and also set the standard for all other Health Boards.

Launched in November 2005, the Monitoring Framework for the NHS Scotland National Cleaning Services Specification was born out of the Healthcare Acquired Infection (HAI) Task force to promote public confidence around standards in healthcare premises.

A key element has been the formation of independent teams, each including a member of the public, made up of a Team Lead, Infection Control Nurse, and Cleaning Services Manager, to carry out random cleaning monitoring visits.

Team leads are told which hospital site and Directorate are to be visited and the public partner selects the ward or department. An announced, unspecified visit is made on the same day.

Annual reviews are held by the teams to look at the work of the previous year and plan for the next 12 months.

There are set formats for the public partners to report back and they also receive mentoring and support to complete their reports. Feedback is also given to Public Partnership Forums (PPFs) through reports on local services and presentations.

A number of important lessons were learned including the value of courtesies and the understanding of cultural ethos when working with people of different ages, genders, ethnicity, physical ability throughout the Board area, and supporting, developing and educating the public volunteers into their roles.

The scheme also highlighted how this affected individual working relationships, the value of reporting outcomes with public partner involvement across the Acute Operating Division, Clinical Directorates and Partnerships within organisation governance structures.