One of the main challenges of hotel bed bug outbreak management is controlling the report details and keeping that information within staff boundaries — without letting it needlessly spread out to visitors and guests.
Luckily, the days of Egyptian Bed Bug Outbreak Management (100% deNIAL) have become more rare. If your company or chain policy is still Egyptian-centric, i.e., housekeepers are terrified to even report bed bug findings, then you are officially living in deNIAL. How’s that working out?
Let’s continue with the understanding that your hotel is grown up and taking a proactive stance to detect, deter and destroy bed bugs. This means that housekeeping and front desk staff are on the case when bed bugs are discovered or a guest report is filed.
Proper management of hotel bed bug outbreak information is critical to help you get rid of bed bugs in the hot zone before they spread. Now of course an loud talking, irate guest at the desk can make this difficult, but proper crisis management techniques can even minimalize this factor. You main goal at all times is calm quiet responce — and fast direct action.
Sometimes it’s hard to get things done quickly and quietly, but in most cases you will need to do exactly this. No matter the source of the report, the plan of action should flow something like thing.
Alert front desk to the zone and extent of the outbreak.
Alert housekeeping supervisor and schedule double close spot checks and bedding flips in the hot zone.
Alert maintenance to to the bed bug infestation and order adjacent room barrier treatments.
Log everything to document what you know and what was done to handle it. Remember, these notes should be stored for later in case litigation is brought against your hotel. Time, date, names, etc are critical to documenting the outbreak response and information management.
So yes the best practice is to keep bed bug outbreaks quiet, but also the folow up action is even more important to maintaining a safe and guest freindly hotel for all to enjoy.
Bed Bug Bureau
Field Intelligence Agent 001