Beat the Germs This Holiday Season with Good Hand Hygiene
Dec 18, 2013 - 4:39:33 PM
Coincidentally, illnesses such as colds and the flu tend to flourish during this time as well. And who wants to miss out on spending time with others or tasting those delectable treats that beg for a bite?
During this very busy time of year, it is important to clean your hands frequently.
Hand washing: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends washing your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. That's about as long as it takes to sing the "Happy Birthday" song twice. Scrub your hands vigorously; use friction while covering all surfaces of the hands, including fingers. According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), there currently is not enough data to show a benefit to using antibacterial soap over regular soap, and new safety information suggests that widespread use of antibacterial soaps can have an impact on the development of bacterial resistance.
Using alcohol-based hand rub: If soap and water are unavailable, use an alcohol-based hand rub containing at least 60 percent alcohol. Squirt a dime to quarter-size amount in the palm of your hand and then rub all surfaces of your hands and fingers until dry.
Recommended times to clean hands include:
Also - don't forget your cough etiquette - make sure to cough into your sleeve and not your hand to avoid spreading germs.
So, have fun this holiday season, and remember that the easiest way to prevent the spread of infection is to clean your hands! Happy Holidays!
For more information:
APIC - Infection Prevention and You
CDC - Wash your hands
FDA -- Taking Closer Look at 'Antibacterial' Soap
World Health Organization - Clean care is safer care
Henry the Hand - Four principles of hand awareness
APIC's mission is to create a safer world through prevention of infection. The association's more than 15,000 members direct infection prevention programs that save lives and improve the bottom line for hospitals and other healthcare facilities. APIC advances its mission through patient safety, implementation science, competencies and certification, advocacy, and data standardization. Visit APIC online at www.apic.org. Follow APIC on Twitter: http://twitter.com/apicand Facebook: www.facebook.com/
APIC - the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology - has experts that can discuss hand hygiene and antibacterial vs. regular hand soaps.
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