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patients using the facilities. With fresh surgical wounds and signs across the hospital about an outbreak of the Noruvirus they were experiencing, as well as other more general cold and flu bugs, this was all far from ideal. In addition, with a loose roll, consumption control goes out of the window and consumable costs go through the roof.


When the FM staff did their rounds earlier the next day, they appraised the situation, opened the dispenser, placed the ‘part roll’ in it, and locked it again. They were probably thinking something along the lines of: “Oh well, the other roll is still there so there should be plenty of toilet roll to last the day.” The next day, the whole story began again – as indicated by the ward sister, this had been ongoing for some time.


If the patient in this case had not been an industry expert, the washroom users would probably have gone on using hand towels all day and blocked the plumbing, and during the life cycle of this situation, this has probably happened. With a little bit of industry knowledge, the problem can be identified, but still not resolved.


Careless Talk Costs Lives For all the manufacturers talk of sealed, secure dispensers, hygienic toilet roll provision and consumption control, this simple process can go wrong. Reasons might include:


• Multiple parties in the equation (as in this case), each of whom has their own priorities


• The staff are not effectively trained and users are never trained


• People do not understand the impact of washroom behaviours on hygiene.


But what is the solution? Good training of cleaning staff goes a long way – simply checking the dispenser action as part of the refill process, every time, would have solved this problem.


Extending this training to other twitter.com/TomoCleaning HEALTHCARE & HOSPITAL HYGIENE | 65


parties in the equation would also help – for example, in this instance the nursing staff. Nurses are already overworked and won’t thank anyone for giving them extra training or additional work, especially as the organisation is already paying an FM company to look after this area. However, it was the Ward Sister who had to take time to run to the store to get the spare roll in our example, so their time is being consumed anyway. An alternative solution to user training in this scenario might be to ensure a highly visible fault report process to be in place – perhaps a sign on each washroom wall indicating how to report faulty dispensers.


No Touch, No Problem Mark concluded: “Training aside, using the right product is key. The simplest and most effective solution to this problem is for manufacturers to provide dispensing systems which totally eliminate any need for user input. This experience is real, and as such, validates the drivers behind the development of the Katrin System 800 two-roll toilet dispenser.


“In a high throughput area such as a busy surgical ward like the one just described, the use of a two-roll toilet system, where the second roll immediately drops into place once the first roll is finished, is the ideal scenario. This way, patients, visitors or staff have no need touch the dispenser, the user experiences a good service, there is no extra workload incurred by the staff, and hand towels won’t block the toilet, so the hospital is happy and cross-contamination is eliminated – everyone is healthier.”


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