Bermuda Hospitals Board Recognizes Housekeeping Professionals

Bermuda Hospitals Board (BHB) and Minister of Health, the Hon. Michael Scott JP MP, launched Housekeeping Appreciation Week today, honouring over one hundred housekeeping staff members responsible for keeping King Edward VII Memorial Hospital (KEMH) clean and infection free. This is the second year BHB is joining countries around the world in a campaign that recognizes the important contribution housekeepers make.

Rates for hospital-acquired infections are considered low at KEMH compared to overseas hospitals, such as those in North America who report that 60% of staphylococcus aureus blood stream infections in ICUs are caused by MRSA. At KEMH, this rate is only 15%.

Executive Housekeeper, Rosa Simons said, “Our staff play a vital role in preventing the spread of infection by adhering to strict policies and procedures. We work closely with BHB’s Infection Control Committee and keep current with international standards. We use almost 900 gallons of hospital grade disinfectant cleaner annually.”

The Housekeeping Team cleans over 800 birthing rooms a year and sterilizes approximately 600 isolation rooms. They also wash over 5,000 beds each year.

Events for today’s launch began with the Minister of Health being escorted on a tour of the housekeeping department, before meeting with housekeeping staff during a special coffee morning reception.

Deputy Chief Executive Officer, Venetta Symonds presented staff with a framed poster thanking them for the important role they play in the hospital and for their contribution to patient care.

“Day and night, seven days a week, you are the team who maintains a clean, healthy, infection-free environment for patients, staff and visitors,” said Mrs. Symonds. “You are the lifeblood of the organisation, keeping patient areas, corridors, bathrooms, surgical rooms and offices hygienic and sanitary.”

Mrs. Simons announced that Kyle Outerbridge was being honoured as Housekeeper of the Year. “Mr. Outerbridge exemplifies service excellence, professionalism and dedication to duty,” said Mrs. Simons. “He is a model employee, a team player and an asset to the hospital.”

A variety of activities are planned to commemorate Housekeeping Appreciation Week, including a lobby display, skits performed by staff members and a luncheon on Friday for housekeeping employees.

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