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Selecting privacy screens: Top 6 tips

The link between patient privacy and infection control is nothing new, but events over
the past 18 months have significantly upped the stakes when it comes to selecting
patient privacy solutions for healthcare buildings.

Hospitals in particular are looking to put robust strategies in place for surge capacity
during winter and at other times of peak need, without compromising on clinical
infection control. As a result, many are considering the addition of solid-surface
screens to their patient privacy toolkit.

Screens are an ideal solution for high-volume departments such as the ER, where
the frequency of cubicle turnovers makes privacy curtains impractical – instead of
removing and replacing a curtain, a solid-surface screen such as our CleanScreen
product can simply be cleaned down using the same disinfectant protocols for floors,
walls and furniture.
Screens are also preferable for room division, which enables hospitals to convert
single-occupancy rooms into two-bed spaces during times of peak need, reducing
the need to accommodate patients in hallways.
So what should you be looking out for when selecting privacy screens for a hospital
or residential care setting? Here’s our countdown of the top 6 points to consider:

6. Does the screen meet all requirements for hygiene and daily cleaning?

Patient privacy screens are the first line of defence against infection, forming a
physical barrier to body fluids including aerosols that can spread bacteria and
viruses. They are also a high-frequency touchpoint and shown to significantly
contribute to the rate of hospital-acquired infection if they are not cleaned regularly.
The screens you choose must be made from a material that is easy to clean, and
that can withstand the effects of frequent disinfection using strong solutions that may
contain chlorine and ammonia. It’s also vital that the screen’s design facilitates
thorough cleaning, with as few dirt traps as possible – especially around the hinges
and joins.

CleanScreen panels are moulded all in one piece from polyethylene so there are no seams or joins in the panels themselves. The 100% waterproof material is designedto withstand regular cleaning with your existing hard surface disinfectant, and the panels join using a unique hinge system with a 180-degree fold that offers maximum cleanability. The panels can also be fully dismantled and even immersed for terminal disinfection.

5. Is the screen versatile and easy to use?

Curtains have been the screen of choice in hospitals for generations because they’re
a simple, no-fuss way to divide patient spaces – so when choosing a solid-surface
screen, it’s vital that this ease of use is preserved. Staff in busy departments don’t
have time to grapple with heavy, bulky or awkward privacy dividers, and it’s vital that
these can be adapted for different applications at different times.

CleanScreen is a fully modular screen system that adapts to all kinds of uses. It’s
available as a wall-mounted or free-standing option, with the free-standing screen
supplied on heavy-duty, lockable castors for ease of transportation to any location in
the hospital. Use it to create emergency patient spaces in multi-purpose areas, to
split up single rooms, or even to bolster infection control in waiting areas as required.

4. Will the screen fit my space and store discreetly when not in use?

It’s rare for one size to fit all areas within the hospital environment so when choosing
a privacy screen system, it’s critical that it can adapt to different locations with ease –
and also that it doesn’t take up any unnecessary space, leaving plenty of room for
vital equipment including ceiling lifts and clinical machinery.

CleanScreen is fully modular so you can add or remove panels to create a custom
screen that fits any space and can be configured in a variety of ways to
accommodate equipment and seating at the bedside. The unique hinge design
means that CleanScreen folds back flat against the wall in seconds when it’s not in
use, or when you need an open plan workspace, for example in trauma centres.

3. Does the screen meet the patient’s needs?

While patient privacy is an important factor in infection control, it’s also vital for
patient wellbeing. Research shows that a lack of privacy can cause stress to
hospital inpatients, which can have physiological effects including raised blood
pressure and slower recovery. Therefore it’s important that any privacy screen you
choose meets your patient’s needs for visual and auditory privacy.

CleanScreen extends to almost two metres in height with just a 10cm gap at floor
level, providing superior privacy compared to most screens on the market. The solid
PE panels deliver excellent auditory privacy and a feeling of increased security when
compared to fabric dividers. The unique hinge design means that even when the
screen’s panels are folded at an acute angle, there are no gaps in between, ensuring
patient dignity is preserved at all times.

2. Will the screen improve our professional standards?

Patients aren’t the only ones who benefit from high-quality privacy standards within
the hospital – staff do too. As well as protecting healthcare professionals from
infection, good-quality privacy screens can help raise professional standards by
making it much easier for your staff to deliver best-in-class care. This means making
it easier to achieve gold-standard hygiene, reducing the risk of accidents and injuries
associated with other types of privacy screen, and minimizing downtime by speeding
up cubicle turnovers. These plus points have direct benefits for patients and can
also reduce stress, increase job satisfaction and enhance performance for
healthcare employees.

1. Is the screen future-proof?

The pandemic is an example of how quickly things can change in healthcare – in
response to a crisis, we’ve seen a decade of progress on infection control happening
in just a few short months. When investing in a new patient privacy system, it’s
therefore vital to consider how it will fit in with your long-term strategy on privacy and
whether it can deliver value for money over the next five or even 10 years.
CleanScreen is an innovative privacy screen that’s designed to provide reliable
performance for many years to come. The modular design means that even if
buildings and layouts change, the screens can adapt accordingly and the simple
design is both versatile and timeless. CleanScreen also offers an antimicrobial
option – blue panels are infused with antibacterial agents that will go on killing
germs on contact, throughout the lifespan of the product.

Want to find out more?

Belroc is the exclusive distributor for CleanScreen in Canada and we would love to
help you find out more about this innovative privacy system. For further information
including a brochure, sample pack or even a live product demonstration, contact Dan
Lawrenson.