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Hovering at the border between healthcare and hospitality, the aged care industry has special requirements and regulations when it comes to laundry sanitation. Fresh, properly disinfected linen is essential for smooth operations within this type of business. 

Hundreds of thousands of Australians live in aged care facilities, which are growing more complex and important by the day. It’s therefore important for laundry businesses to understand the requirements of these facilities in order to provide proper service. Read on to find out what the recommendations are for aged care laundry management.

Infection control processes

Older people have weaker immune systems and a range of illnesses, which mean linen needs to be thoroughly sanitised to eliminate the risk of disease transmission. Laundry can carry traces of viruses such as Influenza or Gastroenteritis, which can be extremely dangerous for people with weakened immune systems.

Using industrial washing machines is essential. These are designed to remove dirt and destroy harmful bacteria. The temperature of the load needs to be maintained at a minimum of 65 degrees C for more than 10 minutes (or 71 degrees C for more than three minutes) in order to comply with the Australian/New Zealand Laundry Practice standards. 

Industrial washing machines also have more washing cycle options and use the right kind of detergent. Laundering cycles for aged care consist of:

  • Flush;
  • Main wash;
  • Bleaching;
  • Rinsing and;
  • Souring.

Linen Management

If you have clients from the aged care industry, it’s important to keep in mind a few key best practices:

  • Collect aged care laundry in a separate container and make sure you keep it separate from all the other laundry.
  • After washing the laundry, make sure it’s stored correctly, away from humidity, contamination, dust etc.
  • Don’t sort linen at the aged care facility, to prevent exposing the residents to possible dangerous pathogens. Linen from the bed of one patient should never be placed on the bed of another.

Needless to say, if you service aged care facilities, you’ll have to put into place procedures that ensure you never mix up their linen with those belonging to other facilities/clients. 

Selecting Equipment

Many aged care facilities will invest in their own industrial washers, as laundering is such an important part of the business. When it comes to choosing the best equipment, quality is just as important as capacity.

This is our recommendation for a Small Aged Care Facility: Girbau’s 28kg Rigid Mount Washer paired with a High-Efficiency Girbau ED Dryer.

A full load can be taken straight from the 28kg Washer into the 33kg Dryer to prevent wasted time splitting loads.

Don’t hesitate to contact us if you need assistance at each stage in the planning, purchasing and servicing your Girbau equipment in Australia. 

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