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Hand, foot, and mouth disease is common in infants and young children. It usually causes fever, painful sores in the mouth, and a rash on the hands and feet. Most infected people recover in a week or two.
There are many reports of the Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease (HFMD) outbreaks across
the country (NJ, FL, CA). HFMD is caused by the Coxsackie Virus which is a member of a family of viruses called (non-polio) enteroviruses. Surface disinfection and hand hygiene are paramount during these outbreaks. Hard surfaces should be treated with a disinfectant. School buses should also be part of a school’s cleaning and disinfection plan. For more information on the disease visit the CDC Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease web page.
The following Triple S brand products are effective against non-polio enteroviruses:
Reminders from the CDC to schools and day care providers:
The Food and Drug Administration ruled on Friday that it is banning the use of 19 active ingredients found in antibacterial soaps and washes. The most common of these are triclosan, typically used in liquid antibacterial soaps, and triclocarban, used in bar soaps.
Manufacturers will have one year to remove the ingredients from their products, or be forced to take them off the market.
“Consumers may think antibacterial washes are more effective at preventing the spread of germs, but we have no scientific evidence that they are any better than plain soap and water,” said Janet Woodcock, director of the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, said in a statement. “In fact, some data suggests that antibacterial ingredients may do more harm than good over the long-term.”
As reported by the Washington Post:
Theresa Michele, FDA’s director of the division of nonprescription drug products, said in a call with reporters that the “vast majority” of the more than 2,000 antibacterial products on the market contain at least one of the banned ingredients.
She said the agency had asked manufacturers for data showing that the long-term use of the ingredients was safe, as well as evidence that the antibacterial products were more effective than soap and water in curbing the spread of illnesses and infections. But she said the companies either didn’t provide the data or the material submitted wasn’t convincing.
An industry group that represents makers of cleaning products disputed that, saying manufacturers had submitted the required information. “The FDA already has in its hands data that shows the safety and effectiveness of antibacterial soaps,” the American Cleaning Institute said in a statement. “Manufacturers are continuing their work to provide even more science and research to fill data gaps identified by FDA.”
The association added that antibacterial soaps and washes “continue to be safe and effective products for millions of people every single day.”
The FDA’s final rule does not affect consumer hand sanitizers, wipes or antibacterial products used in hospitals and other healthcare settings.
Downsizing soap dispenser shots might save stock, but it could compromise handwashing practices
To save money and maximize budget dollars, cleaning departments are looking to reduce usage and extend inventory wherever possible — particularly in restrooms, where commodities such as paper and soap need constant replenishing. Altering the size of paper towel output from dispensers is common practice in many facilities. Similarly, downsizing a shot of soap is becoming more prevalent as a means to stretch stock. But are these cost-cutting measures achieving the desired outcome, or are they in fact derailing proper handwashing practices?
“It’s difficult for me to defend cutting back on soap,” says Jim Mann, executive director and founder of The Handwashing Leadership Forum, Libertyville, Illinois. “We already know that people aren’t washing their hands as often as they should, so right away we’re compromising on a standard that isn’t effective. We should be effective first and then efficient.”
Saul Strain, vice president of ABC Sales & Services, headquartered in St. Thomas, Virgin Islands, agrees and dissuades facilities from reducing soap shot sizes further than what is recommended by the manufacturer.
“I think cleaning managers are trying to maximize how many uses are in a box or a bag of foam soap, and I don’t think they’re wasting a drop of it,” he says. “Going down further from what is recommended might be creating an unhealthy environment. Even though building occupants are washing their hands, they’re being counterproductive.”
Furthermore, one can argue that reducing the size of a single shot to save on soap may in fact have the opposite effect.
“If someone dispenses a little bit of soap, and they feel it’s not enough to wash their hands, they might double-pump or wave their hand under the dispenser a second time,” notes Keith Schneringer, director of channel marketing and sustainability, Waxie Sanitary Supply, San Diego. “So let’s say you have 0.7 ml as the default setting and you go down to 0.4 ml, but people are pumping twice. Now you’re using 0.8 ml, and some people don’t stop at two pumps.”
Restroom users often activate the dispenser multiple times out of habit, regardless of how much soap is dispensed in a single shot.
“There’s a bit of psychology to this,” Mann admits. “A lot of people are multiple pushers. They want enough to get the job done as fast as they can.”
Mann also cautions facilities against limiting the amount of soap dispensed from a dispenser, or the amount of water dispensed from a faucet, because controlled dispensing mechanisms can act as a deterrent to handwashing.
“If you’ve got someone else making the decision for you, and you want more soap and you don’t have it, it can be frustrating,” he says. “The disincentives for washing hands are something to monitor very closely.”
By Kassandra Kania
Everyone uses soap and every company needs it. Not having soap in the bathrooms at your company can give a dirty impression to customers and employees. But this doesn’t mean thousands of dollars must be spent on soap.
Differences between Liquid and Foam soaps:
Both types of soap perform the same task of cleaning your hands. Even though liquid soap is more traditional, that doesn’t mean it’s better. In most cases, money can be saved by purchasing foam soap rather than liquid.
1. The More The Better:
This is a false idea. In fact, the more soap added to your hands beyond the necessary amount can actually dry out your hands. The excess soap will only be washed off and wasted.
2. Plastic vs. Stainless Steel:
In the debate between plastic and stainless steel dispensers, most people say that stainless steel looks more professional. This may be true, but how many companies take care of their stainless steel dispensers correctly? Did you know stainless steel dispensers, should be cleaned every 3 refills or every 30 days to prevent the growth of bacteria inside the dispenser? This means that having these dispensers require more labor costs to maintain, compared to plastic dispensers. Plastic dispensers which have pre-sealed bags are easily changed by removing the old bag and placing the new bag in the slot. This system is not only more efficient, it eliminates the need for cleaning the dispensers as frequently.
3. Location of the dispenser:
There are two ways soap is dispensed, either gravity helps it, which is used in most stainless steel dispensers or most common for plastic dispensers an air tight pump that pulls the soap vertically out of the bag or container. The main difference between these two dispensing methods is Gravity dispensing is only used with liquid soaps and it is always working on the soap, which can cause it to leak out of the container onto your walls or floors resulting in costly damages. With the air tight pump method the soap doesn’t get dispensed until the button is pushed, which prevents any unwanted dispensing. The air tight pump can be used with both liquid and foam soaps, unlike stainless steel dispensers.
Healthcare facilities need to make sure dispensers are filled and checked regularly.
“It seems obvious,” says Huffman, “but you’d be amazed how many times they are not kept filled.”
Soap dispensers should be next to the sink and there should be enough dispensers to encourage people to wash. The placement of hand sanitizer dispensers in entryways and hallways, near banks of elevators, in restrooms and in patient care areas, also helps improve compliance.
When selecting hand sanitizer it’s important to consider product additives, or other ingredients that could cause user discomfort.
The CDC recommends using sanitizer for 30 seconds to adequately disinfect the hands. To help improve hand sanitizing compliance, distributors can offer dispensers that feature a red flashing light on top that stops when the 30 seconds is up, says Patrick Murphy, Dreumex USA Inc., York, Pa.
In industries where employees wash their hands frequently, it’s important to understand the risk of dry hands, or other issues, such as occupational dermatitis. Giving workers ready access to moisturizing creams will prevent their hands from drying out, which will improve wash rates as dry and cracked hands have been shown as common reason workers do not wash their hands in drier, colder weather.
In addition, studies show that end users prefer foam soap over liquid or gels because it’s economical and effective.
Facilities need to take a close look at hand washing rates. Whether distributors offer high-tech or low-tech solutions (or a combination of both), the important thing is improving compliance rates. Washing hands is a top defense in infection prevention, and can save lives.
Ronnie Garrett is a freelance writer based in Fort Atkinson, Wis. She is a frequent contributor to Sanitary Maintenance.
The days of having to stop-and-go in a seedy, smelly or unsightly public restroom may soon be a thing of the past. The European Cleaning Journal reports that a new facility — really, an amped up version of an Interstate rest area — will open in New York City, by summer.
The company, POSH Stow and Go, is seeking a limited number of ‘members’ to sign up to use its clean, soundproofed restrooms when visiting the city for shopping and sightseeing. Among the facility’s amenitities include touch-free taps, “frequently-cleaned” baby changing tables and motion-sensored toilets.
According to company founder, Wayne Parks: “I’m a germaphobe and I don’t like dirty bathrooms, but these are great because they are cleaned after every use. POSH Stow and Go will also be a resting place for visitors who don’t have homes or offices in Manhattan. And it’s a place to drop something off if you’re in a jam.”
The first facility opens in June in Midtown Manhattan between Grand Central and Penn stations. Besides the restrooms, the POSH Stow and Go outlet will also offer storage lockers, showers, laundry machines and a lounge area with wood floors and couches with phone-charging stations.
Facility “members” will pay about a $15 annual fee plus $24 for three days’ use.
If the Midtown location catches on this summer, the company will open another facility in lower Manhattan at a later date, the journal reports.
article from CleanLink.com
Hand hygiene continues to show up on the public’s radar as one of the key ways to prevent the spread of communicable illness. More soap and sanitizing products are available on the market than ever before, catering to a variety of facilities, budgets and populations.
Weeding through the offerings can be challenging for busy managers, which is why jan/san distributors are ready and willing to help.
“It’s certainly within the realm of the distributor to demonstrate to custodial managers the benefits of installing the proper soap system based on what they want their desired outcome to be, providing health and sanitation inside the facility,” said one product manufacturer.
From the traditional liquid or gel bulk-fill soaps to the more modern sealed cartridges, dispensing options haven’t changed much in recent years. Low-traffic facilities may be more likely to use the less expensive bulk soap. However, hermetically sealed cartridges provide a distinct advantage to bulk soaps in that they are not subject to contamination.
“A study by the University of Arizona found that since the air interacts with the soap as you’re pouring it, it becomes a breeding ground for bacteria,” says Dan Josephs, general manager at Spruce Industries in Garwood, N.J. “When they tested the soap coming out of bulk-fill dispensers, they found they were very contaminated. You’re better off washing your hands with water when you see those dispensers.”
For that reason, Josephs typically recommends facility executives implement soaps that are available in sealed cartridges. These offerings are not exposed to air or other elements, eliminating their potential for contamination.
However, as long as there are still facility managers who prioritize being economical about their purchases, there will continue to be plenty of facilities that use bulk-fill systems — not that all decisions come down to money.
For instance, in a high-end facility, managers may want to create a specific perception. To do so, they may implement a beautiful bulk-fill dispenser that is filled with the most pearlized, rich emollient luxury hand soap available. Distributors comment that this high-end soap comes at a price, but to facility managers, the perception is more important than the savings departments may find by using sealed soap and dispensers.
In the case of high-traffic facilities, distributors comment that functionality and dollars drive purchases. Foam soaps that dole out more hand washes and touch-free dispensers are gaining market space.
LISA RIDGELY is a freelance writer based in Milwaukee. She is the former Deputy Editor of Contracting Profits magazine, a sister publication to Facility Cleaning Decisions.