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POst to Share: Stopping the Spread of Colds, Flu and Other Communicable Diseases  XML
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Dan Howard
I'm on a yacht.
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Joined: 08/10/2017 02:38 PM EDT
Messages: 55
Location: New Kensington PA
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Identifying and cleaning touchpoints is the best practice to control the spread of germs in homes, schools, and businesses. Touchpoints are the places where germs can sit and wait to infect the next person.

The “handshake” is the ultimate touchpoint where we transfer communicable diseases to each other in the name of greeting each other. We do this ritual everywhere from the workplace, and grocery store to our houses of worship. In times of communicable diseases, the elbow bump makes a lot more sense than the handshake.
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Other common touchpoints are light switches, doorknobs, the back of chairs, restaurant menus, faucet and refrigerator handles. Less obvious touchpoints are the food storage container, the juice bottle, the top of a chair you pull out or the kitchen counter. Use the office microwave or use a grocery store cart? Well, you get the picture.

In the cases where someone in a home has a serious illness such as C-Diff or MRSA, every linen, TV remote or candy dish they touched can be the source of reinfection. The more serious the illness and worse the immune system of occupants, the more critical disinfection of a property becomes to stop the spread of an illness.

The good news is that there are some excellent disinfection systems and programs that were originally designed for medical facilities that are now available for use in any type of property. Once we identify a risk, we can implement effective solutions for just about every cause of Sick Building Syndrome.

Suggestions for Stopping the Spread of Illness in the Home
It is really, really hard to pay attention to details and healthy practices when we are sick with a nasty bug. The only way this works in most households is to put these habits into practice before there is a sick person in the home. If you don’t have disposable plates and cups in the cupboard before illness, you are not going to the store to buy them after you are tending the sick.

• Get available vaccines
• Wash or disinfect your hands frequently
• Use paper or disposable plates and cups
• Use disposable tissues as opposed to handkerchiefs
• Have ill household members wear a mask to protect from spreading their illness
• Do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth (viruses can transfer from your hands and into the
• body).
• Have children only handle toys that can be easily disinfected before being shared
.
Suggestions for Stopping the Spread of Illness in the Workplace
The best solution is to have a plan in place before dealing with the illness and human resource challenges that a sick workforce can bring to a professional organization. There are consultants that can set programs in place that can work for just about any facility. It is a matter of their establishing a system of communicating responsibility and direction for the workforce.

• Create and communicate an infection control plan.
• Use signage to remind visitors and co-workers of best practices
• Wipe and disinfect all touchpoint surfaces and workspaces each day
• Provide soap, sanitizing wipes and boxes of tissue at convenient locations
• Put hand sanitizer and masks at the entries to the facilities
• Remove magazines and papers from waiting areas or common rooms
• Verify that ventilation and air filter systems are working properly.

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Philo
The Rock
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Joined: 06/18/2014 10:46 PM EDT
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Location: Dallas, Texas
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In an Inspector class last year, I wrote on the Feedback form, "...in the beginning when you tell us where the bathrooms are located, please remind students to wash their hands before returning to class." I am continually appalled at persons who don't wash their hands...

PHILO RAMOS, BS Civil Engineering
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