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Environmental Health & Safety

Pest Control Unit

Bed Bug General Protocol

When a complaint (see note below) of a suspected bedbug infestation is reported to University’s Pest Control Unit, the infestation must be verified before any treatment is considered. A Pest Control Technician will first inspect the dwelling or location to confirm the presence of bed bugs. If actual bed bugs or definitive signs are found, containment and abatement steps will be taken; including various treatment options and methods. If bed bugs or signs of bed bugs are not found, but there is reason to suspect bed bugs are present, a monitoring device (s) may be placed to attempt to verify a bed bug problem exits. Once a bed bug infestation has been noted in a dwelling, the resident(s) cannot relocate to another University dwelling, and nobody else should be allowed to stay in the infested dwelling until the infestation is deemed abated by the University Pest Control Unit.

If bed bugs are verified in a in-patient room, if at all possible, the patients in that room should not be relocated to another room without discussion with the Pest Control Unit or Environmental Services Department Management. In the Medical Center, the Environmental Services Department is contacted for bed bugs as they have a specific protocol for deep cleaning a room/area including the use of steam. To date, this process has appeared to abate any bed bug problems, eliminating the need for the PCU to use pesticides. In patient care areas, the use of pesticides is the least desirable option.

Note: Pest issues or complaints can be broken down into three levels of urgency: emergency, priority and routine (see the “Urgency Guide” on the Pest Control Unit website). Generally, bed bug issues fall into the “priority” category. Priority status means that a complaint will be addressed prior to a routine call, and every effort will be made to respond the same working day. However, it may not require a response during non-working hours (nights, holidays and weekends), depending on several factors and circumstances such as the location and severity of the problem.

With bed bugs, the problem generally cannot be solved immediately and they pose little or no health risk to the affected individuals. However, the sooner the process of control/elimination is started, the less they spread and the sooner the problem may be resolved. Also, depending on the location and individual involved, public relations is a concern and must be considered in terms of response and response time.

It should also be pointed out that due to all the press and communication surrounding bed bugs, many times people think they have bed bugs or bed bug bites and it ends up being something else. This could be a factor in response time also after talking to complainants on the phone regarding the specific signs they are experiencing. One exception is SMH patient care areas, where confirmed bed bug sightings should be considered an emergency and Environmental Services should be contacted as soon as possible for them to commence deep cleaning as noted above.

More specific information regarding the University's Pest Control procedures for controlling bed bugs is available through the link listed below.

Contact EH&S at (585) 275-3241 or e-mail EH&S Questions.

This page last updated 8/17/2015. Disclaimer.