A pet peeve for many is the fact many hospitals are filthy. Housekeepers often come from contracted services that provide the lowest amount they can get away with and pay them minimum wage with no benefits. The turnover is stupendous and they have no incentive at all to do a good job.
Sure, the center hall is buffed to a glossy finish but the patient rooms aren't wiped down every day, curtains aren't changed, walls not wiped and high dusting not done. All those areas are teaming with bacteria.
ER's are the worst. The gurney and surfaces wiped quickly by the RN in between patients but the rooms are cleaned well only once daily, if that. Pull our the gurney and look at what is under it. No wonder hospital acquired infections are rampant. That should be the first thing looked at when a hospitals infection rates go up, how many housekeepers are there....is one person responsible for covering three units?
I think housekeeping services need to be hospital based, not contracted. Pay them a decent living wage and give them benefits. That way you can attract and retain people that want to work and not the bottom of the barrel. Fire them if they don't want to do the job because there will be people wanting to work for you. Give them proper training on why it is so important to do their jobs well and hold them to a high standard.
It doesn't do the staff any good to wash their hands until they bleed if the hospital itself is filthy.