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Have you heard of the GBAC STAR Facility Accreditation Program? What does it mean? Introduced by ISSA, this performance-based program is designed to help facilities establish a comprehensive system of cleaning, disinfection, and infectious disease prevention for their staff and their building.
Recently one of our employees completed certification of GBAC’s (a division of ISSA) Microbial Warrior Certification training that covers the proper steps and procedures which can be taken in order to provide assurances that facilities are safe for both our employees as well as customers. These steps include general knowledge of the virus and how it spreads, proper steps for disinfection, and proper use of PPE (Personal Protective Equipment). In addition to the Microbial Warrior training, GBAC offers another great program to ensure the safety of those returning to work; GBAC STAR™ Accreditation Program on Cleaning, Disinfection, and Infectious Disease Prevention for Facilities (GBAC STAR™ Program). The purpose of this program is to first establish and maintain a cleaning, disinfection, and infectious disease prevention program to control and/or minimize risk associated with infectious agents such as SARS-CoV-2 (responsible for COVID-19 disease) for employees, customers, clients, visitors, the community, and the environment. Secondly, to provide assurance and establish confidence that proper cleaning, disinfection, and infectious disease prevention work practices are in place and implemented, and finally to establish a framework for communication and raising awareness of best practices as they relate to cleaning, disinfection, and infectious disease prevention. In order to achieve their star accreditation, GBAC provides a number of elements to follow in order to ensure best practices are being followed.
The 20 GBAC STAR™ Program Elements
The FieldFLEX app supports the majority of these elements for accreditation.
1.Organizational roles, responsibilities, and authorities
Roles and responsibilities regarding the facilities GBAC STAR™ Program shall be identified, documented, and communicated. A list of the roles and their responsibilities within the facility about the GBAC STAR™ Program will need to be provided to the GBAC STAR™ review team.
Once you have identified the various roles and responsibilities within your facility, FieldFLEX can help facilitate the execution of these responsibilities being that it is a role-based app allowing segregation of activities and inspection visibility between various levels of user roles.
2. Facility Commitment Statement
A GBAC STAR™ Program commitment statement shall be developed, signed by senior leadership, and communicated to interested stakeholders. A copy shall be provided to the GBAC STAR™ review team.
FieldFLEX is able to create and populate a disinfection certificate upon the successful completion of a (disinfection) checklist. This can be branded with both GBAC as well as your company’s logos which can then be signed by senior leadership.
3. Conformity and Compliance
The facility shall ensure that all relevant requirements are identified and complied with that are associated with cleaning, disinfection, and infectious disease prevention programs. The list shall be shared with the GBAC STAR™ review team. It is recognized that this is a living document.
With the FieldFLEX disinfection app, you are able to digitally share your progress with the GBAC STAR™ team with included detailed data reporting and completed checklists.
4. Goals, objectives and targets
The facility’s goals, objectives and targets shall be shared with the GBAC STAR™ review team. These are usually based on results from the facilities initial and ongoing risk assessments, audits, customer and employee feedback.
FieldFLEX provides both estimate and quality check checklists, which work in tandem with our reporting functionality and can assist in audits as well as customer and employee feedback.
5. Risk Assessment and Risk Mitigation Strategies
The facility needs to establish and implement methods for ongoing risk assessment and ensure that when risks are identified, control measures are designed and implemented to eliminate or mitigate risks to an acceptable level.
Once your facility has established and implemented methods to monitor ongoing risk assessment and your strategy to deal with those risks, this can be built in to one of our customizable FieldFLEX checklists.
6. Standard Operating Procedures (SOP)
Most facilities have standard operating procedures for cleaning, disinfection, and infectious disease prevention. The facility shall provide copies of its SOPs to the GBAC STAR™ review team or other accredited audit groups. Note: GBAC will provide a variety of different industry templates, developed with industry experts that can be used by the facility to develop its own SOPs and to assess the GBAC STAR™ review team’s expectations. The list of templates is continuously growing!
Once your company’s standard operating procedures have been outlined, FieldFLEX can digitalize these procedures into easily accessible checklists, these checklists can be easily shared with senior leadership, as well as the GBAC STAR™ review team.
7. Tools and equipment
Technology, tools and solutions are changing constantly. Review and consideration of different tools and equipment shall be completed periodically. The facility shall provide a list of equipment and tools currently being used.
FieldFLEX and FieldFLEX’s asset management functionality allows for accurate management of inventory which can be instantaneously updated and shared with the GBAC STAR™ review team.
8. Cleaning and disinfection chemicals
Cleaning and disinfectant chemicals shall be appropriate for the area and objects being treated, the environment surrounding the area, and the infectious agent in question based on their risk assessment. The facility shall provide a list of cleaning and disinfection chemicals being used and what they are using them for.
FieldFLEX’s “Select the Cleaning Supplies You Are Using” field which is present in all of our app’s disinfection checklists can help you properly keep track of which disinfection and cleaning products you are using.
9. Inventory control and management
The facility shall share with the GBAC STAR™ review team their inventory control and management plan for supplies, tools, and equipment.
Our asset management functionality allows for an accurate collection of all data relating to inventory control and management plans regarding supplies, tools, and equipment. Once this data is collected it can be easily shared with the GBAC STAR™ review team.
10. Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
The facility shall share their PPE requirements for their cleaning and disinfection activities with the GBAC STAR™ review team.
FieldFLEX’s asset management functionality allows for proper management of all PPEs while our inspection checklists allows for employees to follow distinct steps for donning and doffing PPE, this data can all be shared with the GBAC STAR™ review team.
11. Waste management
The facility shall make available their biomedical/biohazardous waste management plan to the GBAC STAR™ review team.
FieldFLEX’s inspection checklists allows your company to accurately document all biomedical/biohazardous waste management plans which can then be directly reported to the GBAC STAR™ review team.
12. Personnel training and competency
The facility shall provide its training and education plan for cleaning and disinfection activities. The 20 GBAC STAR™ Program Elements www.gbac.org 3
While your company may deliver all training and education in person or via a purchased software program, FieldFLEX allows you the opportunity to implement these plans for cleaning and disinfection activities directly into our app’s inspection checklists.
13. Emergency preparedness and response
A copy of the facility’s emergency response plan shall be provided to the GBAC STAR™ review team.
FieldFLEX provides the ability to accurately document your facility’s emergency response protocols which can be used during training exercises and can be reported directly to the GBAC STAR™ team.
14. Facility infection disease prevention practices
The facility shall provide to the GBAC STAR™ review team a copy of its infectious disease prevention program. These practices may be incorporated within the facility’s SOPs. If this is the case, the facility can provide a synopsis of its strategies.
Once your company has outlined the actions contained within your infectious disease prevention program, these actions can be implemented into FieldFLEX’s inspection checklists, and a synopsis can be easily provided to any party.
15. Worker health program
A copy of the facility’s worker health program specific to infectious disease prevention shall be provided to the GBAC STAR™ review team.
A completed facility worker health program specific to infectious disease prevention can be easily implemented into FieldFLEX’s inspections application, and the reports generated form these inspections can be easily shared with the GBAC STAR™ review team.16. Audits and Inspections
A synopsis of the facility’s audit program specific to the GBAC STAR™ Program shall be provided to the GBAC STAR™ review team.
FieldFLEX’s inspection checklists allow for easy digital conversion of your company’s facility’s audit program, the synopsis of which can be easily shared with the GBAC STAR™ review team via FieldFLEX’s detailed reporting functionality.
17. Control of suppliers
The facility shall provide a review of how the facility obtains products and services to the GBAC STAR™ review team. The facility should include if the services for cleaning and disinfection are in-house, contracted or a combination.
FieldFLEX makes it easy to build a custom checklist allowing your users to indicate how your facility obtains their products and services. The reporting functionality then allows users to generate a completed report of all of your facility’s products and services which can then be shared with the GBAC STAR™ review team.
18. Documentation management
A list of the facility’s GBAC STAR™ program documents shall be maintained and provided to the GBAC STAR™ review team. (A list of suggested documents will be provided).
FieldFLEX mobile has built in documentation functionality which can make it easy for your company to manage all of your new program’s various documents, once they have been collected in one place (in the app) it can be easily shared with the GBAC STAR™ review team.