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"They're heroes." Housekeepers have one of the most important jobs in Maine's hospitals during coronavirus, COVID-19

Cleaning and disinfecting handles, handrails, and patient's rooms has never been more important during the coronavirus, COVID-19 pandemic.

MAINE, USA — When you think of health care heroes, it's easy to think of nurses and doctors at the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic, but there is another group in the hospital that works in the background and rarely gets the recognition it deserves.

Sara Donovan is the Registered Infectionn Preventionist Nurse at Northern Light Inland Hospital.

“I make sure patients are on the proper precautions and the area is clean and sanitary," Donovan said.

Every day, Donovan works with the unsung heroes of the hospital, Environmental Service Technicians commonly known as housekeepers. 

Credit: NCM

“They are heroes. They seem to be in the background but they’re doing something that is super important.”  

Kim Alexander spends her days cleaning and disinfecting every door handle, light switch, and any room used in the hospital. 

“My role is very important here at Inland to keep the families, visitors, community safe," Alexander said.

Marjorie Dodge is an Environmental Service Technician at Northern Light Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor.

“I take great pride in my job and I think a lot of us housekeepers feel the same way," Dodge said. “Every day we come to work worried, are we going to take this virus home?”

Robert Chapman is the Director of Environmental Services at Northern Light Inland Hospital. He's worked at the hospital for more than 25 years and understands how important his staff's role is.

Credit: NCM

“We are pivotal in making this a safe place to come and get the care they need," Chapman said. “I think out hospital is one of the cleanest in the state.”

Besides the constant cleaning to keep staff, patients, and the community safe Dodge said she also acts as a friend to patients as hospitals have limited visitor policies. 

"We know each other by names before they leave," Dodge added. 

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At NEWS CENTER Maine, we're focusing our news coverage on the facts and not the fear around the illness. To see our full coverage, visit our coronavirus section, here: /coronavirus

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