Ensuring that employees wash their hands properly especially, after using the washroom is very important to reducing disease transmission.

Hand washing is the single most effective way to prevent the spread of infections. You can spread certain “germs” casually by touching another person. You can also catch germs when you touch contaminated objects or surfaces and then you touch your face (mouth, eyes, and nose).

Hand washing for hand hygiene is the act of cleaning one’s hands with or without the use of water or another liquid, or with the use of soap, for the purpose of removing soildirt, and/or microorganisms.

“Good” hand washing techniques include using an adequate amount of soap, rubbing the hands together to create friction, and rinsing under running water. The use of gloves is not a substitute for hand washing.

The different situations where people can pick up “germs” include:

  • When hands are visibly soiled.
  • After using the washroom (includes changing diapers).
  • After blowing your nose or after sneezing in your hands.
  • Before and after eating, handling food, drinking or smoking.
  • After touching raw meat, poultry, or fish.
  • After handling garbage.
  • Visiting or caring for sick people.
  • Handling pets, animals or animal waste.

For effective hand washing, follow these steps:

  • Remove any rings or other jewelry.
  • Use water and wet your hands thoroughly.
  • Use soap (1-3 mL) and lather very well.
  • Scrub your hands, between your fingers, wrists, and forearms with soap for 15 seconds.
  • Scrub under your nails.
  • Rinse thoroughly.
  • Turn off the taps/faucets with a paper towel.
  • Dry your hands with a single use towel or air dryer.
  • Protect your hands from touching dirty surfaces as you leave the bathroom.
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