IPM in Health Care Facilities Project

Safer Pest Management in Maryland Hospitals

Health care facilities aim to create an environment that promotes patient healing under the best conditions and to “first do no harm.” Facilities are increasingly aware of the need to eliminate toxic chemical exposures. A health care facility environment free of pests and hazardous chemicals is critical in protecting the health of the people served by the facility, its visitors, and staff.

Conventional pest management creates unnecessary health risks

Frequent reliance on hazardous chemical pesticides is often the first line of defense used to eliminate pests… the “see em, spray em” approach. The problem is magnified when those served in the facility are exposed to toxic pesticides linked to the very issues they’re treated for by the facility.

Physical health risks linked to common chemical pesticides:

  • Increased cancer risk
  • Liver and kidney damage
  • Neurological and reproduction problems
  • Respiratory problems, including asthma and COPD

Learn about the principles of effective pest management and exclusion through Ecological IPM, use our Resources for EVS departments, and access no-cost consulting services available to your health care facility through our project.

Download the IPM in Health Care Facilities Project brochure

New www.SaferDisinfectants.org Website Provides Answers

A new website, SaferDisinfectants.org can help protect your family and business by choosing safe disinfectants that are approved by EPA on its List N for COVID-19. Using the website, you can check products you already use to determine if they are designated as Safer or pose and Increased Risk to health. Sort product choices by health risk, type, use location, surface and other cirterial. The website is updated daily from EPS’a List N for disinfectants that are effective for COVID-19.

Visit the website: www.saferdisinfectants.org

New On-Demand Training Videos

Learn from the experts! These short 30-minute videos will teach you how to safely and effectively tackle your toughest pest management challenges.

Learn more! Access our video webinars.

More COVID-19 Disinfecting Resources

Many disinfectants on EPA’s List N for institutional use against SARS-CoV-2 contain active ingredients which are known to cause or exacerbate respiratory problems and compromise immune systems, putting patients and staff at risk.

Learn about the hazards and safer disinfectant options

IPM is Confirmed and Recommended by Research

IPM’s efficacy advantage has been confirmed by research and in practice in health care facilities, and the IPM approach is recommended by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the American Hospital Association.

IPM costs less long-term and can be achieved once your facility recognizes some of the fundamental ways IPM differs from more traditional pest control programs.        

There may be resistance—this is a natural response to change—but with education, monitoring, and positive reinforcement, staff will understand that reducing their exposure to toxic chemicals and improving air quality is an important occupational safety improvement and an integral component of a healing environment.

Remember, IPM takes time to achieve positive results, and even successful programs may go through a period of static as you discover problem areas and adjust accordingly. Taking one building or one unit at a time, you can tweak your process, as needed, as you transition to a system-wide IPM program. When your program has been in place for long enough to show significant results, you may also wish to work with your community affairs department to publicize your successes more broadly to demonstrate your environmentally responsible approach to effective pest control. And last but not least, lead by example by sharing your success with us!

Recognition / Facility Awards

When a facility reaches the highest level of IPM implementation, our Project presents a Sustainable Pest Management Award to a facility and pest management company.

Previous Award Recipients

  • Springfield Hospital
  • Anne Arundel Medical Center / Western Pest
  • Howard County General Hospital
  • University of Maryland Medical Center
  • Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center
  • Springfield Hospital Center

Read the Baltimore Sun article on the 2008 Project launch

All Project services are pro bono. Questions? Contact us at berlin@mdpestnet.org.