Hospital infection control topics are discussed and written about every day, from antimicrobial surfaces to cleaning procedures that are designed to keep patients, staff and visitors safe. But one often overlooked area is the soft surfaces within a hospital. These include privacy curtains, upholstered furniture, bed linens, and even employee coats and uniforms.
All soft surfaces in a healthcare environment can be infected with microorganisms, and many studies have found pathogenic bacteria on soft surfaces. Furthermore, there is evidence that the bacteria on these surfaces can be transmitted to staff and patients, leading to infection transmission.
Soiled linen is one area where infection transmission is a documented issue. Soiled linen rooms can contain an unusually high concentration of particulates per cubic meter, far more than other areas of a hospital. The vast majority of these particulates are bacteria, fungi and spores. As a result, soiled linen management is a huge issue that hospital planners, architects and executives should consider when designing their next hospital. An automated system with a dedicated, sealed path from TransVac can significantly reduce this risk.
 Kukla, Chris. A New Frontier: The Dangers of Pathogens on Soft Surfaces. Infection Control Today, www.infectioncontroltoday.com/, posted 10/31/2013