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Free course: Sanitizing to prevent infection spread in public spaces

Janet Kiplinger Ciccone
June 11, 2020

As restaurants, hospitals and other venues continue to cope with keeping customers safe in the age of COVID-19, Ohio State is offering a free, online course to prevent the spread of infection through sanitation of public spaces. The course is planned to launch on Canvas.net in July.

Introduction to Cleaning, Sanitation and Infection Prevention expands knowledge for health and environmental safety professionals. It benefits customers, patients and employees in hotels, restaurants, hospitals, doctor’s offices, retail locations, nonprofit organizations, government offices, performance and other event venues.

“This massive open online course will basically provide a complimentary introduction to cleaning and sanitation, with an emphasis on building leadership skills in this area,” said Milos Bujisic, assistant professor of hospitality management who teaches the course and led its creation. “It is the initial course in the first U.S. academic certificate that deals with environmental services.”

Doe Kley, a senior infection preventionist at Clorox, serves as the other course instructor. “In my 20-year infection prevention and control career, I have learned that environmental service workers have one of the most important and difficult jobs,” she said.

“Their work literally saves lives. The majority of them are truly passionate about their work. But to be effective decision-makers for their facilities, they need leadership training, as well as a better understanding of the science of infection prevention and cleaning and disinfection.”

Objectives of the free course are:

  • Describe the goals of cleaning and disinfection
  • Identify modes of transmission for infections typically seen in public spaces
  • Identify specific practice applications for preventing relevant transmissible infections
  • Identify and apply best cleaning and disinfection practices
  • Develop a cleaning, sanitation and infection prevention strategy for a public space

Bujisic developed the free course with Kley and Rebecca Lewis, system director of infection prevention at INTEGRIS Health, Oklahoma City.

Earn full Certificate in Healthcare Environmental and Hospitality Services

The free course is the first of four in the fully online Certificate in Healthcare Environmental and Hospitality Services. Bujisic created the certificate in 2017 in partnership with the Association for the Health Care Environment, a membership group of the American Hospital Association.

Professionals who earn the full certification will expand the boundaries of management and leadership opportunities within their disciplines.

“This certificate program, which is so vitally needed right now, is a great first step in continuing environmental service education,” Kley said. “In the past 20 years or so, we have seen an increase in emerging pathogens ranging from the bioterrorism scares in the early 2000s to growing antibiotic-resistant concerns to the current COVID-19 pandemic. We need to be better prepared for the next infectious disease threat.”

The Healthcare Environmental and Hospitality Services Certificate provides environmental services employees and leaders with the needed tools to meet this need.

The other three online courses in the certificate are:

  • Infection Prevention in Healthcare and Hospitality
  • Managing the Customer Experience in Healthcare and Hospitality Services
  • Healthcare Environmental Services Internship

If you are not a current Ohio State student, learn how to apply and become eligible to take the three other courses in this certificate.

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