About Linda Lybert
Linda is the President of Healthcare Surface Consulting and a healthcare surface expert. She has enjoyed a 16-year career passionately crusading to awaken, inspire and educate people on the impact of surfaces in the spread of healthcare-acquired infections (HAIs). Her mission is to save lives by engaging with healthcare and design professionals to address the critical relationship between healthcare surfaces and HAIs.
Linda’s passion for healthcare began in 1998 while working for a distributor of a DuPont solid surface material. With an aggressive sales goal and a rural territory, she decided to try selling the product into healthcare facilities. Realizing that there are many counter-tops and sinks in the healthcare setting and having a desire to learn about the healthcare market, she started calling on hospitals. What she did not realize at the time was how healthcare facilities were struggling with infection control issues. She also could not have guessed how many solutions the product she was selling could provide.
Who could have imagined that Corian would become a standard material used for walls in many facilities?
Operating rooms require quick turnover and effective disinfection. In 1998 ceramic tiles were a very common wall material in operating rooms. They were an inexpensive product that provided some wall protection. However, it is nearly impossible to disinfect ceramic tile walls due to the porous nature of the tile and grout. In addition, their brittleness made them susceptible to damage from medical equipment collisions. Solid surfaces can be fabricated with seamless connections, including coved corners and bases.
Linda worked with several facilities that were willing to be test sites and four operating rooms were built. Not only was the disinfection process measurably more effective, the room turnover rate was significantly increased. As an added bonus, the new walls were virtually indestructible!
In 2002 Linda was appointed to the FGI Guidelines for Design and Construction of Healthcare Facilities Revision Committee, where she was instrumental in the creation of the 2006 Ideal Surface Characteristics guideline. As an active member of the American Society of Healthcare Engineering (ASHE), she was appointed to and served on the Planning Design and Construction Committee and worked on the creation of the recently released Subcontractor Healthcare Construction Certificate program. As a guest speaker at APIC 2014 Conference, she presented “Surfaces are the Bottom Line in Infection Control.”
Research has shown that surfaces are active in the spread of infection. Therefore, they are a critical component in the design and construction of healthcare facilities. As a subject matter expert and independent consultant, Linda’s focus is on the types of surfaces used in the healthcare environment, how healthcare workers, visitors and patients come into contact with them and how they can be cleaned and disinfected effectively.
Linda is a published author of articles about healthcare surfaces and the spread of infection in healthcare and speaks at national conferences and various events throughout the year. Her understanding of infection control, regulatory agencies and the needs of healthcare customers creates a communication bridge for stakeholders to develop solutions for preventing HAIs.