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They’re scared to go to work, but working to keep you safe

They are used to making sure the hospital is germ-free, but over the last three months their work has become even more critical.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Imagine being responsible for keeping the hospital sanitized against the coronavirus. 

For years the cleaning staff at hospitals and many places went unnoticed, but now their jobs are more crucial than ever. And it’s a scary spot to be in.

These hospital workers are the ones behind the scenes making sure everything is clean and sanitized and their work is more important now than ever before.

Jacqueline Curry is one of the housekeeping managers at Atrium Hospitals and she admits, some days she has to convince her staff to come to work. 

"A lot of people are scared," Curry said. "I’m scared every day that I come in here.”

They are used to making sure the hospital is germ-free, but over the last three months their work has become even more critical.

“We always sanitize were just doing it a little more normal than we normally would do it like with the waiting areas the elevator buttons making sure they’re getting wiped down constantly," Curry said.

"Of course it’s a lot scarier and we're a lot more cautious," Secorlia Baker, who also works on the housekeeping staff, said. "We're always cautious — paying a little extra attention as far as PPE and things like that.”

Much like the doctors and nurses they support, the cleaning teams are also wearing PPE gear.

“We are just making sure we are protected – making sure we keep PPE on, making sure washing hands, sanitizing hands,” Baker said.

Curry said her team is scared.

"People are scared of the unknown because we really don’t know what the virus is," she said. "You could have a pandemic inside the hospital if it's not clean.”

The CDC has guidelines for cleaning measures, including:

  • Wear reusable or disposable gloves for routine cleaning and disinfection.
  • Clean surfaces using soap and water, then use disinfectant.
    • Cleaning with soap and water reduces the number of germs, dirt, and impurities on the surface. Disinfecting kills germs on surfaces.
  • Practice routine cleaning of frequently touched surfaces. 
    • High touch surfaces include: Tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, sinks, etc.

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