5 Ways to Prevent Bed Bugs in Assisted Living Facilities
Bed bugs can be difficult to control and prevent in public places. Nevertheless, it’s imperative that facilities like nursing homes and assisted living communities have a plan for preventing bed bugs and controlling outbreaks. An infestation can damage an institution’s reputation and have long-term consequences for its residents.
Nursing homes and assisted living facilities are transient, but they tend to have more control over who works in their centers. If you are in charge of a nursing home, it’s important that you have a plan for controlling bed bug infestations. Below are five ways to prevent these pests from wreaking havoc on your facility.
- Work with a Professional Pest Management Company
Don’t wait until you have a problem with bed bugs or other pests before looking for a pest control company. Work with a pest management professional early on to assess your risk, address vulnerable areas, and create a prevention plan. Taking steps to prevent bed bugs from entering your facility can make all the difference in keeping your center pest free.
- Train Staff to Recognize the Signs
Your staff should be trained to recognize the signs of bed bugs. This includes nurses, nurse assistants, and those laundering clothing and bedding. These signs include itchy bites on the body, and blood splatters or fecal droppings on linens and cast skins. If bed bug activity is suspected, your staff should know who to report it to and immediate action should be taken.
- Install Bed Bug Monitoring Devices
There are a number of bed bug monitoring devices that can help identify the presence of bed bugs. For example, some are active monitors that give off carbon dioxide and body heat to mimic the human body. Others are passive monitors that are placed underneath beds or near futurniture to intercept traveling bed bugs.
- Perform Regular Inspections
If your facility has had bed bugs in the past, it’s important to perform regular inspections. Look for signs of bed bugs on headboards, bedding, box springs, mattresses, etc. Unfortunately, visual inspections only go so far; they can’t detect low level infestations, and it’s difficult to see behind baseboards, wall hangings, outlet covers, etc. When you do perform visual inspections, be sure to have the proper tools on hand, including a flashlight and magnifying lens.
- Consider Covering Mattresses
Protective measures can be taken if you feel that bed bugs are a problem in your facility. You can cover mattresses and box springs, which will help prevent an infestation. Covering beds is an investment, but it’s far less than having an infestation. Also, keeping a clean facility is important. Have a regular schedule for washing clothes and bedding and vacuuming rooms.
Heritage Pest Control works with commercial businesses such as nursing homes and assisted living facilities. Contact us today to learn about our approach to preventing and controlling bed bug infestations.