With staff looking after occupants in every aspect, here are five tips you can follow to ensure your laundry and labelling system is running smoothly within your care home to minimise confusion amongst residents and team members alike.  

1. Establish a clear labelling system

It’s important to create a clear and concise labelling system for all residents’ clothes and belongings, especially considering that some of them may suffer from cognitive impairments leading to dementia. Make sure to use permanent markers and waterproof labels to ensure they don’t fade or get lost in the wash; this will also allow you to return items quickly and correctly, without having to rely on the residents’ memory.

2. Keep track of residents’ clothing

Create a checklist or an inventory system to keep track of residents’ clothing and ensure that everything is returned to the right person. Even when your labelling is up to scratch, the voluminous amount of laundry to go through every week – including linens – may cause confusion. A tracking system can help prevent mix-ups and reduce the chance of items going missing.

3. Use high-quality equipment

When dealing with big cargo, there is no space for compromise: invest in high-quality washing machines and dryers that can handle the volume of laundry required in a senior care setting. Choose machines that are easy to operate and that have features like temperature control and cycle selection – this will not only ensure that all items are spotless, but also help you save on costs as modern equipment is designed to help manage water and energy usage.

4. Train staff members

Ensure that all staff members are properly trained on how to do laundry and know how to follow the labelling and inventory system that has been put in place. This can help reduce errors and ensure that everything runs smoothly, not to mention that it will allow you to have a rotating system so that every team member can help with the workload. It is also important to consider that, with care homes being medically orientated establishments, efficiently trained staff will reduce the risk of cross-contamination.

5. Set a maintenance schedule

No matter how avant-garde your equipment is, it won’t last unless you look after it properly! Create a routine cleaning schedule for washing machines and dryers to keep them in good working condition and ensure maximum performance. Regularly inspecting machines to prevent breakdowns will also help extend their lifespan. Remember: a well-maintained laundry facility can save time and money in the long run.