Tradition and Modernism Meet to Fight Hospital-acquired Infections at Sant Pau Hospital

Following strict hygiene norms is a key factor in reducing healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) and saving lives. I personally witnessed how HAIs affect patients when my wife acquired a serious kidney infection during the birth of my first son. She had to stay in the hospital on antibiotics for a week, and was forced to stop breastfeeding him. A poor sanitation of the equipment used in that delicate moment probably caused the infection. Not only did she go through severe pain and personal grief during that important moment in her life, but the hospital incurred additional costs due to the infection. The following case study highlights how hospitals can use technology to avoid situations such as these.

A historic hospital

The former Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau (in English: Hospital of the Holy Cross and Saint Paul) in Barcelona was designed by the Catalan modernism architect Lluís Domènech i Montaner. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, a beautiful building and more importantly, a place where traditional medicine and current technology get together to fight HAIs. In 2016, more than 35,000 patients were admitted and 36,000 surgical operations undertaken. The hospital has also dealt with more than 145,000 emergencies and 350,000 external consultations.  

The challenge: Obtaining an overview of cleaning management

Bacteria can quickly spread on surfaces throughout hospitals, so regular and proper cleaning and disinfection is essential. Sant Pau was monitoring the completion of key cleaning tasks, but no specific data was collected. Thus, it was not possible to see in real time who was executing a task, in which area this task was taking place or whether a patient was still occupying a bed.

Sant Pau was looking for a system that would provide an overview of all cleaning operations to help manage the cleaning process.

The SmartView solution

Sant Pau installed Diversey Care’s SmartView integrated platform in March 2016. Providing real-time monitoring and reporting via its cloud-based technology, the system enables comprehensive analysis of cleaning tasks throughout the hospital. This helps identify and alert staff to potential hygiene problems that may arise, enabling preventive measures to be taken. The easy-to-use SmartView system can also help manage room occupancy in the 644-bed hospital. The valuable intelligence delivered can help teams adjust the hospital’s budget and inform the right decisions. A reduction in patients with HAIs also significantly reduces costs.  

I was so happy to see how technology can help reduce infections in the places where people are most vulnerable that I teamed up with my colleague Cristina Garcia Arcos to develop a full case study about SmartView in Hospital Sant Pau. The team at Sant Pau were outstanding to work with and it is my hope that SmartView can keep new mothers from having to experience the pain of an infection during such an important moment in their lives.