The Role of Facilities Management in the Control of Healthcare Associated Infections (HAI)

Liyanage, Champika Lasanthi orcid iconORCID: 0000-0001-6687-3611 (2006) The Role of Facilities Management in the Control of Healthcare Associated Infections (HAI). Doctoral thesis, Glasgow Caledonian University.

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A growing body of evidence now exist, which suggests that Healthcare Associated Infections (HAI) are a major cause of morbidity and mortality. There is, however, a paucity of empirical knowledge and evidence-base of the role of Facilities Management (FM) in the control of HAI. Therefore, the main aim of this research was to investigate the role of FM in the control of HAI. The focus of the study is on domestic services. The research methodology of the study employed both qualitative and quantitative approaches. Altogether, 81 interviews were carried out involving experts in the areas of FM and HAI in the National Health Service (NHS). The qualitative data collected was analysed using content analysis. The qualitative data sets were then augmented by 412 completed questionnaires. The quantitative data sets obtained were subjected to rigorous statistical analyses.
The study concluded that FM has a major role to play in the control of HAI, mainly in terms of cleaning, catering, waste management and laundry and linen services. However, FM is yet to feature prominently in the ‘control of HAI agenda’ in the NHS. There is evidence and lack of clarity on the roles and clear lines of communication between the major players in the control of HAI in FM services. There is a relatively low level of integration between the clinical teams and FM teams in the control of HAI. The roles and benefits of knowledge management and performance management are yet to be fully exploited in FM services in the control of HAI. A Performance Management Framework (PMF) for the control of HAI in FM services (particularly in domestic services) have been developed, tested and validated. The study recommends, inter alia, that FM should be made integral to the core services in hospitals for effective control of HAI. A national training and education framework for FM teams should be developed in order to enable them to carry out their work to the highest standards. There is also a need to adhere to a Performance Management Framework (PMF), which allows FM services to monitor and measure the performances in the control of HAI. The research methodology employed in this study could be replicated in different countries, including developing countries. There is also scope to research the key motivational constructs associated with effective knowledge sharing between the domestics and ICT teams in the control of HAI.

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