The quality of a nursing home is often judged by the cleanliness of the facility. Well-cared-for rooms, common space and kitchens indicate a concern not only for the health of the residents but also for their happiness. Although the specific housekeeping tasks may vary from facility to facility, a general checklist can be formed by breaking the tasks up by location.
The resident’s room in a nursing home offers the only privacy that the resident has. It is the resident’s home within the home, and thus it is especially important that the rooms be kept clean and pleasant. In order to achieve this, dust all surfaces, sweep and mop hard floors, vacuum carpets and empty trash containers. Inspect the bedding daily and change as needed but no less than once a week. The bathroom must be cleaned thoroughly including the shower/bath, sink, toilet and area around the toilet. Also make sure to wipe down any safety bars that the resident holds onto for stability. In addition to cleaning the room the housekeeper should perform a basic inspection to identify any minor or major maintenance requirements like burned-out light bulbs, broken televisions or leaking faucets.
The common room in a nursing home are often the site of all manner of entertainment, including heated Texas Hold ‘Em tournaments, chess matches and exercise classes. Indeed, it is the party room where all the residents gather. Generally, a common room has three zones: a zone that is designed to offer the comforts of a living room; a zone with small tables and chairs, and a larger open space for performances or other physical activities. Housekeeping duties include washing down all tables and chairs, vacuuming upholstered furniture, vacuuming carpets, sweeping and mopping hard floors and dusting. An inspection of the games and other recreational equipment should also be done on a regular basis as these offer a means of transmitting bacteria from resident to resident.
The office space, although not generally open to the residents or the public, should still be cleaned thoroughly not only for the comfort of the staff but also for the health of the residents. Office housekeeping entails much of the same dusting, vacuuming and washing as the other spaces but also should include particular attention to the work station of the staff member. Wipe the computer monitor screen with soft cloth containing a small amount of rubbing alcohol, wash the keyboard as well as possible without allowing moisture to penetrate into the electronics, and wash the phone and headset.