How are Germs Transmitted in Hospitals?

Most of us are aware that germs exist in hospitals. We expect that stringent cleaning standards are being followed in order to kill germs that are lingering in the environment. How are germs transmitted in hospitals? It’s an important question to answer, as it endangers the lives of patients and staff. The Hospital Microbiome Project, a year-long study was designed to, “better understand the development of bacterial communities.”[i] This study gathered samples from surfaces, air, staff and patients. It is important to note that the study was conducted in a new hospital setting prior to opening and continued while populated with patients and staff.

Findings showed the spread of germs were more likely to occur staff-to-patient than patient-to-staff. It also found that drug-resistant germs lived more numerously on surfaces than on patients. Additionally, germs already living on a patient spread to the hospital room.[ii] So after a hospital room is cleaned, when a new patient comes in, the bacteria on the new patient spread to the room.

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What are Your Shoes Bringing into the Gym?

Most of us remove our shoes when we enter our homes so we don’t bring dirt into the house. We take this action so we can keep ourselves healthy. Unfortunately, there is more than just dirt hanging around on shoes, there is a community of germs and bacteria.

People want to feel safe while they are working out so providing a clean gym is a must. Making sure equipment and high touch areas throughout the gym are cleaned and disinfected is a high priority. Hopefully, staff and members are visibly cleaning equipment, using hand sanitizer, and cleaning free weights. We trust that deeper cleaning is happening behind the scenes in locker rooms, bathrooms, shower stalls and that floors are being mopped. It is no secret that all these areas harbor germs. But, does your gym make you change your shoes before working out? If they don’t they need to start!

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