Hospitals and care homes cannot function without hand washing facilities
Having a number of temporary mobile handwash stations ready to be deployed at a moment’s notice can be a vital resource for any hospital, medical centre or care home. In short, none of them can function safely without staff, patients and visitors having access to an effective soap and water wash, should there ever be a break in services – for whatever reason.
The ability to position such handwash stations at the point of need is also a crucial factor in any situation when effective hygiene is needed at short notice.
Such scenarios include:-
- During an outbreak of an illness such as norovirus, when they can be deployed at the entrance of an effected isolation ward.
- During scheduled building work when water supplies are likely to be at risk.
- And finally, when the unexpected occurs – particularly in a situation such as the recent one at a major Greater Manchester hospital which was left without running water for around five hours.
Alcohol based hand gels will work well to an extent, being quick and easy to use and straightforward to deploy, but, (and it is a considerable “but”) there are a number of instances when only a soap and water wash will suffice:-
Interim Guidance Note on Managing Norovirus in Residential Care Settings (March 2023) states “Remember: alcohol hand gels do not work against norovirus.”
Professor Pall Thordarson of the University of New South Wales was recently reported in a in Chemical & Engineering News article What is hand sanitizer, and does it keep your hands germ-free? as observing that a soap and water hand wash is more effective when it comes to infection control.
How a soap and water wash works
Soap molecules, he advised, disrupt noncovalent interactions that hold viruses and bacterial cell walls together – and have the added advantage of being able to “surround and help detach microbes from the skin.”
“Hand sanitizers can’t remove microbes from the skin and aren’t effective against all germs.”
Another disadvantage of gels is that they don’t work as well when hands are visibly soiled, according to both the reports outlined.
In fact, Professor Thordarson’s summary makes the point extremely well:
“Alcohol-based products work… but nothing beats soap.”
Soap and water hand washing – at the point of need!
Teal produces a comprehensive range of mobile sinks and portable basins for every type of hand washing situation for use by anyone who needs to wash their hands effectively, whether they’re in an office environment, temporary accommodation or out in the field on a daily basis.
Shown above: The Teal MediWash, which features a handwashing technique instruction video display.
The Teal range of mobile handwash stations includes the MediWash, Hygienius and Hygienius ProWash, BigSynk, Super Stallette, TEALwash, Handeman Xtra, Compact Classic, HandSpa, CliniWash – and now the new WashStand Xtra.