Proper Blood Clean Up Part I
Exposure to blood and other body fluids can be dangerous. Knowing how to handle blood cleanups should be understood by anyone who works with youth and community-based organizations. When a child has a bloody nose or someone scrapes their foot or hand, you may need to clean up the blood. It is vital that the blood is cleaned up properly to avoid exposure to bloodborne pathogens. When you are asked to clean up body fluids or blood, you must remember to exercise caution. When cleaning-up blood you need to always ensure that proper personal protective equipment is used to prevent an accidental exposure. You should always assume that any blood or body fluid is infected with a dangerous and sometimes life-threatening diseases like Hepatitis or HIV. At Bio-Hazard Cleanup USA we are always absolutely sure to use the utmost care and diligence when handling any clean-up site. Find out more on our About Us Page.
Checklist of Cleaning Supplies Need for Blood and Body Fluid Spills
Depending on the location, the type of spill and the amount of spill, specialized protective equipment may be needed. However, most blood or body spills can be cleaned up safely using OSHA’s recommended bloodborne pathogen cleanup kit supplies, which include:
- Disposable gloves
- Protective eyewear
- Protective gown
- Protective hat/cap
- Biohazard bag with a zip tie
- Absorbent material like sand or kitty litter
- Disinfectant towelettes
How to Clean Up a Blood Spill on Different Types of Surfaces
There are times when a blood spill will be easy and there will be times when it can be difficult. It can be difficult to contain and cordon off the area and follow the general cleanup guidelines. Let’s take a look at the following descriptions and how you can ensure that you are prepared for a blood or body fluid cleanup.
- Wood Flooring and Other Non-Carpeted Flooring – Hard surfaces like wood, cement, linoleum, vinyl, ceramic, metal, tile or a non-absorbent surface like pool decking are often the location of a blood spill. Cleaning up blood or body fluids from this type of surface is often much easier than absorbent surfaces. However, there are steps that need to be followed to prevent accidental exposure to bloodborne pathogens. Blood on hard surfaces can quickly spread if they are not properly contained. The procedures for cleaning up blood or body fluid spills on these surfaces include the following:
- Block off the area until the cleanup and disinfection have been completed. Do not allow unprotected staff member or visitors to access the area before and during the cleanup.
- Before you begin, put on a pair of disposable gloves.
- Grab paper towels or other disposable absorbent material and use it to wipe up as much of the spill as possible.
- Mix one part bleach and nine parts water together and gently pour over all the contaminated surfaces.
- Allow the bleach solution to sit on the contaminated area for 20 minutes. Then, using more disposable absorbent paper towels to wipe up the bleach solution.
- All non-disposable cleaning materials should be disinfected using a bleach solution and air dried.
- Remove your gloves and place them in a garbage bag along with all other cleaning materials.
- Double bag the garbage and tightly close the garbage before disposing of the garbage.
- Wash your hands with plenty of soap and water.
Blood Spills on Carpeted Floors
Blood spills on carpeted surfaces can be tough to clean because of the absorbent nature of carpeting. Many buildings contain some carpeting, which is why you need to know how to properly clean blood spills from carpeted areas. The procedure for cleaning blood and bodily fluid spills from carpet are similar to cleaning hard surfaces; however, there are a few other concerns. Additionally, you cannot completely disinfect carpet. So, you must learn to sanitize the area as thoroughly as possible to protect against exposure. Be sure to Check back with our regularly updated blog for more information on these and other issues, and click here to read Part II.