Issue Briefs

Keep Critical Services OperatingHealthcare Supply ChainIndustrial Laundering of Scrubs


Keep Critical Services Operating

TRSA has two sectors of membership (commercial laundry/facility services companies and their supplier partners who manufacture and supply their needed supplies and infrastructure). Combined, the industry serves life-sustaining businesses allowing them to safely operate. TRSA members support the safe operation of healthcare facilities, grocery stores, infrastructure maintenance, food processing, public utilities (water and energy), first-responders, federal and state governments, laboratories, pharmaceutical and other manufacturing, and other fundamental supply chain businesses.

Essential workers and the public depend on the laundry and facility services industry to produce and process PPE including healthcare contact textiles (HCTs), flame-resistant and high visibility clothing, first aid and safety items and other protective garments. Many PPE products must be cleaned by commercial laundries that use specialized processes to ensure their safety and integrity. As evident during the  COVID-19 pandemic, laundry processing interruptions threaten the safe operation of healthcare facilities as well as other critical infrastructure businesses.

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Healthcare Supply Chain

The prolonged outbreak of SARS COV-2 has created an appetite within hospitality and healthcare sectors for information on stability and survival of coronaviruses not only on various surfaces, but also its ability to survive in wash processes. TRSA, along with its international partners, conducted a study by De Montfort University to examine how Coronavirus behaves on three fabrics commonly used in the healthcare industry.

The conclusion from this research is that fabrics potentially contaminated with the virus should be managed within a controlled environment where the segregation of soiled linen is well managed. This should eliminate the potential for recontamination of both clean linen, surfaces and equipment. Healthcare uniforms be managed within a controlled environment where the segregation of soiled linen is well managed and washed in line with recognized healthcare laundering procedures such as those recognized by the Healthcare Infection Control Practices Advisory committee (HICPAC).

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Industrial Laundering of Scrubs

The prolonged outbreak of SARS COV-2 has heightened concerns regarding hygiene and sustainability, especially surrounding the stability and survival of coronaviruses on various surfaces including textiles. TRSA, along with its international partners, conducted a study by De Montfort University to examine the survivability of the laundering process of the coronavirus on fabrics commonly used in the healthcare industry.

The conclusion is that fabrics potentially contaminated with the virus should be managed within a controlled environment where the segregation of soiled linen is well managed. It is essential that the processing sites are well-equipped to manage the risks of cross contamination and have adequate procedures and practices in place. Healthcare Personal Attire (HPAs) should be washed in line with recognized laundering procedures such as those recognized by the Healthcare Infection Control Practices Advisory Committee (HICPAC).

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