The Need for Added Protection
With this background and the projection of increased nosocomial infection rates, the question of how to keep the healthcare environment cleaner, and in a more sustainable state of readiness, lead the authors to be challenged beyond simply improving the current cleaning methods. The principal motivation was to provide methods of additional control of the bioburden within a healthcare environment, beyond the regularly scheduled maintenance and cleaning protocols. The idea of providing treatment of the physical environment that would be sustaining and perhaps bridge the periods of use between regular cleaning periods, was worthy of study. The search for various antimicrobial agents that would lend themselves to environmental treatment, led the authors to the use of triclosan, the agent mentioned above. When the authors began the preliminary studies in 1995, a limited number of products containing triclosan were available for application. However, no information existed beyond laboratory findings, that triclosan could control ‘real world’ bioburden, to the degree needed in a healthcare environment.