How Often Should Hospital Privacy Curtains Be Changed?

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Hospitals and other medical settings have an incredibly unique environment. Unlike most other businesses, they must maintain a sterile setting to give their patients the safest and most hygienic treatment possible. 

One way hospitals achieve this is by using hospital privacy curtains. Hospital curtains are an often-overlooked aspect of medical settings. However, this doesn’t mean that they’re an unimportant part. In fact, hospital privacy curtains are an essential part of medical settings. Not only do they help to prevent the spread of disease, but they also give patients the privacy they require.

While this may be true, many people are unaware of how often hospital privacy curtains need to be changed. If you want to learn more about hospital privacy curtains and how often they should be changed, keep reading below:

The Importance of Hospital Privacy Curtains

There are several reasons why hospital privacy curtains are crucial in medical settings. Some of their benefits include:

  • A patient’s comfort – they can help a patient to feel more relaxed in a clinical setting.
  • Privacy – they give patients the privacy they need when discussing personal problems with a doctor or nurse.
  • They help to prevent the spread of infection – evidence has suggested that medical curtains can help significantly reduce the spread of disease in a hospital setting. 
  • Reduce the amount of noise within a medical setting – medical curtains have also been shown to reduce the amount of noise within a setting. Many patients appreciate this as hospitals are well known for being noisy. 

How Often Should Hospital Privacy Curtains Be Changed?

It’s often hard to know how often disposable medical curtains need to be changed in a hospital or medical setting. While there is some advice around this, many medical professionals disagree with the advice that has been given. Currently, the advice is that hospital privacy curtains need only be changed when there are noticeable stains on them. 

However, the majority of medical professionals believe that they should be changed more often than this. They argue that the curtains frequently cause cross-contamination in the hospital. This is because they are constantly being touched by medical professionals and patients alike, but they are not being changed often enough to prevent cross-contamination from occurring. 

Are Hospital Privacy Curtains a Breeding Ground for Infections?

As stated above, many medical professionals believe hospital privacy curtains are a breeding ground for infections and bacteria and evidence suggests that this is correct. Studies have shown that patients shed microorganisms which contaminate the hospital surfaces. These microorganisms can survive for extended periods, even if surfaces are disinfected. They can be picked up by healthcare professionals and transferred to patients and other staff members. This poses a massive issue for hospitals and other medical settings. 

In the UK, although many medical professionals argue that hospital privacy curtains need to be changed regularly, they are only changed when hospital workers decide that they are no longer fit for purpose. This can cause the spread of infection within a hospital. Thankfully, many medical settings are choosing to change privacy curtains much more often to prevent this from happening. 

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