Yeah, having too much to do, sometimes even with a good ratio, affects infection control. We've had a lot of poopy/throwing up patients in the last month, staff have had it, etc. It's really been a problem. The only thing that gives me some inkling of feeling in control of the situation is to spend about 20 mins. at the end of my shift with gloves and a bunch of disinfecting wipes (the really strong kind that kill nearly everything), going over everything I can find. Tops of linen hampers, doorknobs, most of everything at the station, dynamaps, thermometers, scale, etc.
I know that really what that does, is help prevent the next shift from picking it up for the first 20 minutes of their shift, or until the patients start pooping again. During the shift, I have time to clean my steth a few times, my VS equipment a half dozen times, and the back of my clipboard when I remember it; and of course alcohol gel my hands a lot. Does it help? Heck if I know, it's discouraging to do all this and still come back one day to see your sick heart patients are now throwing up buckets, when they didn't come in with any GI bug.
Well now, so I've been all over the countertops with a disposable wipe that should kill it all! Dayshift goes to get report, housekeeping shows up. The first thing she does is wipe the counters down with a wet rag that looks like it came out of a month-old bucket of mopwater. I could just cry.