Up to Date Laundry Recertified Hygienically Clean Healthcare
Up To Date Laundry, Baltimore, has again achieved Hygienically Clean (HC) Healthcare certification, reflecting their commitment to best management practices (BMPs) in laundering as verified by on-site inspection and their capability to produce hygienically clean textiles as quantified by ongoing microbial testing.
Up-To-Date was first certified in 2014. Recertification confirms the organization’s continuing dedication to infection prevention, compliance with recognized industry standards and processing healthcare textiles using BMPs as described in its quality assurance documentation, a focal point for Hygienically Clean inspectors’ evaluation. The independent, third-party inspection must also confirm essential evidence that:
- Employees are properly trained and protected
- Managers understand regulatory requirements
- Physical plant operates effectively
To achieve certification initially, laundries pass three rounds of outcome-based microbial testing, indicating that their processes are producing Hygienically Clean Healthcare textiles and zero presence of yeast, mold and harmful bacteria. They also must pass a facility inspection. To maintain their certification, they must pass quarterly testing to ensure that as laundry conditions change, such as water quality, textile fabric composition and wash chemistry, laundered product quality is consistently maintained. Re-inspection occurs every two to three years.
This process eliminates subjectivity by focusing on outcomes and results that verify textiles cleaned in these facilities meet appropriate hygienically clean standards and BMPs for hospitals, surgery centers, medical offices, nursing homes and other medical facilities.
Hygienically Clean Healthcare certification acknowledges laundries’ effectiveness in protecting healthcare operations by verifying quality control procedures in linen, uniform and facility services operations related to the handling of textiles containing blood and other potentially infectious materials.
Certified laundries use processes, chemicals and BMPs acknowledged by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation, American National Standards Institute and others. Introduced in 2012, Hygienically Clean Healthcare brought to North America the international cleanliness standards for healthcare linens and garments used worldwide by the Certification Association for Professional Textile Services and the European Committee for Standardization.
Objective experts in epidemiology, infection control, nursing and other healthcare professions work with Hygienically Clean launderers to ensure the certification continues to enforce the highest standards for producing clean healthcare textiles.
“Congratulations to Up To Date Laundry on their recertification,” said Joseph Ricci, TRSA president and CEO. “This achievement proves their ongoing commitment to infection prevention and that their laundry facilities take every step possible to prevent human illness.”
Hygienically Clean certification is the fastest growing and most recognized international standard for processing healthcare linens and garments. Hygienically Clean microbial content limits on clean textile samples are based on the most stringent European thresholds. Laundries must pass quarterly RODAC and semi-annual USP 62 testing. RODAC total microbial content must be less than or equal to 20 colony forming units (cfu) per square decimeter for healthcare laundry and USP 62 results must show absence of specified bacteria. Hygienically Clean’s combination of process and outcome measures ensures textiles cleaned in certified facilities meet standards appropriate for businesses that use them. In addition to Healthcare, specialty certifications are offered for laundry for food manufacturing/processing (Food Safety), restaurants (Food Service) and hotels (Hospitality).