Top Takeaways from Halosil’s Disinfection for First Responders Podcast with EMS World
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HealthcareMay 5, 2022

Top Takeaways from Halosil’s Disinfection for First Responders Podcast with EMS World

As deadly fires have helped lead to fire codes and drug tampering resulted in sealed bottles, there are now new safeguards that have been developed against the spread of COVID-19.

Disinfection is truly critical for EMS personnel, and as we learned from the pandemic, it’s important to ensure the right systems are in place in order to maintain the highest healthcare disinfection standards. One area of focus is increased attention to cleaning and disinfecting EMS-specific work environments, like the patient compartments of ambulances. Only when an area is completely and thoroughly disinfected can EMS teams rest assured knowing that their environment is ready for use.

Click here to listen to the EMS World podcast.

Seán Fay, national emergency response director at Halosil International, recently spoke with EMS World’s Mike McCabe about how to keep spaces that EMS teams encounter safe and effectively disinfected. In this blog post we will explore the top takeaways from this engaging podcast.

Takeaway 1: First Responders Remain Fatigued from COVID-19

According to the CDC, responding to disasters is both rewarding and challenging work, and sources of stress for emergency responders include witnessing human suffering, risk of personal harm, intense workloads, life-and-death decisions, and separation from family. Stress prevention and management is critical for responders to stay healthy and to continue to help in the situation. To take care of others, responders must be feeling well and thinking clearly.

But after more than two years of dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic, first responders are feeling fatigued and overworked. Long shifts, encountering many patients, and the stress of worrying about contracting COVID-19 have led to nearly 1 in 5 healthcare workers quitting their jobs due to the pandemic. Adding complex and tedious disinfection practices to their already stretched workload is the last thing EMS teams might want to deal with.

Takeaway 2: Proper Disinfection is Critical, as Pathogens are Plentiful

The contamination of emergency medical vehicles due to dangerous and contagious pathogens poses a large threat to public health. Millions of ambulances are used every day to transport patients, and the proper disinfection of these vehicles is essential to maintain safety standards for patient care.

In a 2019 study, it was found that raised levels of bacterial species were detected in a range of emergency medical vehicles. Ambulances were contaminated with MRSA, which is resistant to antibiotics. In 13 metropolitan ambulances tested, 49.9% of swab samples showed positive for bacteria; and 0.9% were highly drug-resistant pathogenic strains: MRSA; methicillin-resistant coagulase-negative staphylococci; and carbapenemase-producing Klebsiella pneumoniae. In a separate study on 21 ambulances, 47.6% of surface swabbings were positive for MRSA. Needless to say, pathogens are easily found in emergency vehicles, and they must be disinfected against.

Takeaway 3: Disinfection Helps with Employee Retention

Having the right disinfection system in place can help retain staff and improve the team’s overall health and safety. The Halo Disinfection System® is an effective tool and it’s important for employees to know that their organization can use it to help not only keep patients or passengers safe, but also EMS staff as well.

For example, the use of the Halo Disinfection System improved absenteeism for Seán’s team when he worked with vulnerable population transport for Health and Human Services. His team included 600 staffers, and as soon as they implemented the Halosil system he saw excellent results including a 31% reduction in the time employees called in sick, a 60% reduction in the number of safety-related incidents, and less overall situations where people reported that their families were sick (likely picked up illnesses through the employee). He noted that the Halo Disinfection System was worth every penny because he was able to efficiently retain employees.

Ensure Proper Disinfection with the Right System

Having the right disinfection system in place is crucial to alleviating burdens on EMS teams. With a dry fog system that’s quick and easy to operate, first responders can ensure their vehicles are thoroughly disinfected against pathogens anywhere they lurk inside the ambulance.

By leveraging the EPA-registered HaloMist disinfectant, HaloFogger® dry-fogging technology, and HaloFogger® POD, Halosil empowers EMS teams to efficiently eliminate pathogens from their environments. Through its easy-to-use design and touchless mode, the Halo Disinfection System® pairs best in-class usability with the highest levels of efficacy.

For patient transport, the HaloFogger® POD is a revolutionary approach to disinfection designed to treat a variety of emergency system vehicles quickly and easily. The self-contained, easy-to-use, portable dry-fogging system creates the same aerosolized droplet size and target concentration of HaloMist™ disinfectant that works across the many diverse spaces and places emergency responders come into contact.

Click here to listen to the EMS World podcast.

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