Hand Sanitiser Caution

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Hand Sanitiser Caution

Postby Tortoise Trust » Fri May 01, 2009 1:38 pm

Alcohol-based hand sanitisers are widely available in the form of liquids and gels, and are very convenient in use, but they are of limited effectiveness.

While these products initially reduce surface-borne bacterial loads substantially, they have very limited residual activity, and they have low effectiveness against certain viruses and bacteria, including clostridium. In addition, they have no mechanical cleaning capacity. It is therefore recommended that hands be washed first with soap and water if physical particle contamination is present. Hand sanitisers should never be relied upon as a first line of defence against cross infection, but only as an adjunct to a thorough hand washing regime. In that role, studies have shown that they can provide additional useful protection. If hand washing is impractical, then use of a hand sanitiser between handling animals is certainly better than nothing. A minimum 30-second second exposure of sanitiser solution containing at least 60% alcohol is typically required for significant effectiveness. A typical 5-15 second usage (as is often encountered) merely conveys a false sense of security and is therefore counter-productive to infection control efforts. It is extremely important that alcohol based liquids and gels are never used in the presence of a naked flame, in an oxygen rich environment, or in the presence of sparks or electrical equipment that may produce sparks ,as they are highly flammable and may have a flash point of less than 100 degrees Fahrenheit.

Benzalkonium chloride based hand sanitisers offer some major advantages over alcohol based types. They have better persistence, resulting in germicidal activity for several hours, and they have none of the incendiary properties that render alcohol based preparations so hazardous. As with alcohol based sanitisers, however, it is vital that physical debris and dirt are removed first using soap and water.

Andy
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Re: Hand Sanitiser Caution

Postby Carrie » Sun May 03, 2009 8:28 am

That is such useful information Andy, thanks. I always keep some hand sanitiser near the tort table, but will make sure I wash hands thoroughly too.

Carrie
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Re: Hand Sanitiser Caution

Postby divingdancer » Sun May 03, 2009 9:54 am

Carrie wrote:That is such useful information Andy, thanks. I always keep some hand sanitiser near the tort table, but will make sure I wash hands thoroughly too.

Carrie





Thanks Andy, you always rely on what is printed on the labels of products. From now on it will be soap and water and washing my hands properly in addition to the gels. Can I remind people to follow the 'nhs' standard for handwashing which is more intense than 'normal' handwashing.

http://www.plymouth.gov.uk/hand_washing_techniques.pdf

the above website has a leaflet showing correct handwashing techniques which we may all find useful.


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Re: Hand Sanitiser Caution

Postby alpacatastic » Mon May 11, 2009 9:24 am

Thanks Andy and Carrie

Carrie - the hand washing poster is great - I have been looking for a good one. Copies are now going in all the school loos and the farm unit at the school where I teach. :D


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Re: Hand Sanitiser Caution

Postby urbantortoise-Jane » Sun May 17, 2009 10:13 am

It is alss worth mentioning that alcho gel is of course incredibly flamable. There was a case at the hospital I worked in where a nurse used the gel just as she went for a break. she lit up a cigarette and ended up in A&E with severe burns to her hands. :cry:
Jane

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Re: Hand Sanitiser Caution

Postby Joan » Mon Jul 20, 2009 1:16 pm

Tortoise Trust wrote:Alcohol-based hand sanitisers are widely available in the form of liquids and gels, and are very convenient in use, but they are of limited effectiveness.

While these products initially reduce surface-borne bacterial loads substantially, they have very limited residual activity, and they have low effectiveness against certain viruses and bacteria, including clostridium. In addition, they have no mechanical cleaning capacity. It is therefore recommended that hands be washed first with soap and water if physical particle contamination is present. Hand sanitisers should never be relied upon as a first line of defence against cross infection, but only as an adjunct to a thorough hand washing regime. In that role, studies have shown that they can provide additional useful protection. If hand washing is impractical, then use of a hand sanitiser between handling animals is certainly better than nothing. A minimum 30-second second exposure of sanitiser solution containing at least 60% alcohol is typically required for significant effectiveness. A typical 5-15 second usage (as is often encountered) merely conveys a false sense of security and is therefore counter-productive to infection control efforts. It is extremely important that alcohol based liquids and gels are never used in the presence of a naked flame, in an oxygen rich environment, or in the presence of sparks or electrical equipment that may produce sparks ,as they are highly flammable and may have a flash point of less than 100 degrees Fahrenheit.

Benzalkonium chloride based hand sanitisers offer some major advantages over alcohol based types. They have better persistence, resulting in germicidal activity for several hours, and they have none of the incendiary properties that render alcohol based preparations so hazardous. As with alcohol based sanitisers, however, it is vital that physical debris and dirt are removed first using soap and water.

Andy




Andy, do you know if Zoo Med Wipe Out 3 hand cleaner is still available? I've seen it advertised as an alcohol based gel but not the old liquid spray!

Thanks.
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Re: Hand Sanitiser Caution

Postby Lawrence » Sat Jul 11, 2015 5:20 am

I dont handle my tortoises much at all, they dont like it puffing and hissing even squeeling if I do. When I do I use disposable gloves. We get cheap thick cotton weave glove here in compressed bales of about thirty so I take a new pair each time then throw them away, as they are degradable on the compost heap.

Maybe surgical gloves are a good idea to avoid cross contamination?
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Re: Hand Sanitiser Caution

Postby Tortoise Trust » Sat Jul 18, 2015 6:57 am

They are if you are dealing with potentially infected/contagious animals.

For the most part, good hand washing will suffice.

You just have to risk assess the situation. More risk = more precautions.
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Re: Hand Sanitiser Caution

Postby Mac » Tue Apr 19, 2016 8:23 pm

When I worked in the NHS all staff were told to use a particular hand washing technique:

http://www.nhsprofessionals.nhs.uk/down ... 202013.pdf
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