Infection prevention – the importance of hand hygiene in the workplace

Hand washing with portable sinks in the workplace

“Only 5 percent of people washed their hands enough to kill infection”

Hand hygiene in the workplace is “not adequate”, particularly when bearing in mind the onset of the cold and flu season reports Lindsay Tippin on the Occupational Health & Safety website.

At the core of the article is the recommendation that employees wash their hands seven times a day as a minimum whilst at work. A study lead by Carl Borchgrevink, an associate professor at Michigan State University’s School of Hospitality and Business provides some worrying headline statistics:-

“…only 5 percent of people washed their hands enough to kill infection and illness causing germs after using the bathroom. To make matters worse, 33 percent of hand washers didn’t use soap, and 10 percent skipped [hand washing] altogether.”

The full list of recommendations is here presented in summary – the full list can be viewed on the Occupational Health & Safety website:-

  1. “Wash hands before starting work. 
  2. “Wash hands after contact with bodily fluids.
  3. “Wash hands after removal of gloves.
  4. “Workers should wash their hands after completing one work task in one area of a facility before moving on to another task in another area.
  5. “Wash hands before eating, smoking, or preparing food. 
  6. “Wash hands after using the restroom.
    “Wash hands before leaving work.”

The article by Lindsay Tippin also goes on to include useful advice on putting gloves on and taking them off properly, the hygiene problems associated with long fingernails and the benefits of paper towels as opposed to hot air hand dryers.

Portable sinks enable an effective hand wash for any workforce – wherever it’s required

The TEAL range of mobile sinks and portable hand wash stations enable an employer to provide an effective hand wash for all members of staff – wherever they are and whatever they’re doing.

All Teal hand wash units are portable, robust, easy to clean and easy to use. The range includes mains, motor vehicle, and generator powered models, as well as several that work with pre-heated water.