In a first, Victoria Hospital automates laundry

The automated laundry system setup at Victoria Hospital Campus. DH Photo/S K Dinesh

Putting an end to the decades-old practice of manual washing of patients linen, the Trauma and Emergency Care Centre at the Victoria Hospital has switched over to an automated laundry system.

Claiming to be first in Karnataka for a governmental hospital, the technology adopted a few days ago, helps change linen and patients’ uniform daily.

The system has already caught the attention of several major hospitals, including Army Hospital in New Delhi, which has studied the project in detail and is keen to use it at its campus.

Dr S Balaji Pai, special officer of the centre, told DH that this was for the first time that a government hospital had adopted such a technique.

“The major objective behind the move is to minimise the infection that may spread through linen,” he explained.

The patients will now get a new pair of cleanly washed and pressed uniforms, besides their bedspread and pillow covers being changed daily.

Dr Asima Banu, Microbiologist at the Bengaluru Medical College and Research Institute, said: “The new system has ensured that the infection rate is at very minimal. There are separate machines for washing bed linens, staff dress and patient uniforms.”

Upon collection of linen from every ward, the clothes will be cleansed with a hypochlorite solution as part of the disinfection process. “Later, the cleaned clothes will be put into dedicated machines for further wash,” another medical professional at the centre explained.

An automated drying and ironing facilities are available at the centre. Once the washing is done, every piece of cloth is neatly folded and stored in a stacking trolley, which will be driven into every ward daily at around 8 am and distributed to the patients. At the same time, the old ones will be collected by another team,” the medical professional added.

Every day about 200 bedspreads are washed and pressed, and a similar amount of patients’ uniforms also washed. After 100 washes, both the linen and patients’ uniform will be replaced with a new set of clothes.

Buoyed by the success of the automated system, Minister for Medical Education Dr Ashwathnarayana has expressed interest to replicate the system in all the other hospitals under the state government and medical education department.

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