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According to survey results released by Atlanta-based pest control company Orkin and the Association for the Healthcare Environment (AHE), the top four most challenging pests for healthcare facilities are ants, flies, roaches and bed bugs.
Three out of five respondents said ants are the most difficult pests to manage, followed by flies, cockroaches and bed bugs the same rundown from 2012. In fact, ants have been the top pest in each of the last four years the survey has been issued. Also noted in the survey, and identical to the 2012 survey results, one in four respondents has experienced a problem with bed bugs.
The survey asked 150 AHE members about sustainability practices, pest management challenges and areas of their facilities that experience the most pest activity. The environmental services professionals who responded primarily directors or managers indicated that entrances, employee break rooms, dumpster areas and dry storage are the most common pest hot spots.
Year over year, we see a lot of the same pests affecting healthcare facilities, says Greg Baumann, Orkins vice president of training and technical services. The good news is that an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program can target these pests with strategies for each of these pest hot spots.
For professionals caring for the healthcare environment who are interested in learning more about IPM and its benefits, AHE and Orkin are offering a complimentary four-week online IPM training course worth four Continuing Professional Education credits. The course begins in November and is free for AHE members. Non-members can register for a fee. All healthcare professionals can visit www.ahe.org to register for the course.