Category Archives: Disease Prevention


Tips for Cleaning and Disinfection in Hotels

During winter the general public spends more time indoors due to colder temperatures and inclement weather. Places like airports, hotels and public transportation can become a breeding ground for illness-causing germs due to the increased number of people spending more time there. Hotel staff should take note of this increase in the spread of germs during cold and flu season and have a strong cleaning and disinfectant program to prevent guests and staff from becoming ill.

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Critical Germ Touchpoints in Education Facilities

When it comes to effective cleaning in school facilities, what most people think about first is the restrooms. In fact, studies have found that parents, when visiting a college or university their son or daughter is considering, invariably visit the restrooms to examine their cleanliness. The reasoning is: clean restrooms mean a well-run school; poorly maintained restrooms, can mean something far different.

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Dispelling the Myths: Ebola

With Ebola gaining more and more coverage in the media, and the 2nd healthcare worker diagnosed, we felt the need to provide greater insight into this emerging virus that has surged into the zeitgeist.

First, we want to dispel a myth that is causing concern: No, Ebola can’t be spread through the air like the common cold: Ebola can only be spread by direct contact with body fluids from an infected individual, living or dead. The CDC defines direct contact as “body fluids (blood, saliva, mucus, vomit, urine, or feces) from an infected person (alive or dead) [that] have touched someone’s eyes, nose, or mouth or an open cut, wound, or abrasion” (Centers for Disease control and Prevention, 2014). It may take up to three weeks after exposure, for an infected individual to start experience symptoms of Ebola. Individuals cannot spread the virus until they have fever 100.4 degrees or greater along with other symptoms usually related to the flu.[1] This means the 2nd infected nurse from Texas who recently traveled to Northeastern Ohio, did not meet the criteria for transmission while traveling. CDC Director -Tom Frieden stated, “Although she did not report any symptoms and she did not meet the threshold of 100.4, she did report at that time that she took her temperature and found it to be 99.5…she did not vomit, she was not bleeding, so the level of risk [to] people around her would be extremely low.” Continue reading


The Honest Truth … Ebola and Enterovirus D68

The Honest Truth…

With increasing news coverage of Ebola and Enterovirus D68, many questions have been posed looking for clear answers. It is our goal to give you the information you need, without the need for extensive research while remaining clear and concise about the issues at hand.

Do you have any disinfectants that will kill Ebola and Enterovirus D68?

No one does. Currently there are no EPA registered products with kill claims for Ebola or Enterovirus D68. Why… well it all has to do with the testing process that any disinfectant must go through with the EPA to gain certification.

The requirements were established by the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA). FIFRA requires extensive test data to be submitted to prove that the solution is stable, non-harmful to humans or the environment, and has proven efficacy against any pathogens that are on the label. The antimicrobial testing is done by outside testing labs that use clinical isolates or approved alternates that are treated with the disinfectant at the recommended contact time (how long the surface must be in contact with the disinfectant). If the resulting culture shows a reduction that meets the requirement, the formula passes and if it meets all other criteria, the claim can appear on the disinfectant label. Continue reading

Germs: The Top Six Germ-Infested Locations, Part One

Have you ever put your hand on something and then thought, “I wonder how dirty that is”? Reality is, germs are just about everywhere and ready to attack. Without the proper measures of disinfecting, you are susceptible to getting sick.

Where will you find the most germs? Of all the places you visit, six stand out as the places where you are most likely to come in contact with disease-causing germs and bacteria. Here are the first three, along with the germiest “touch points” at each location . . . and some of these might surprise you! Continue reading

Blue Virus

Top Five Disease Outbreaks in History

Disease outbreaks have occurred throughout history. Some have lasted for years, and are still present today while others evolved and fortunately passed.

Top Five Disease Outbreaks in History

Disease and illness outbreaks have occurred throughout history. Fortunately, the number of outbreaks has significantly decreased due to the vast amount of innovation in medicine and disinfectants. However, we are still vulnerable to many illnesses.

To prevent new pandemics from occurring, it helps to know how previous crises were handled. The following are some of the largest outbreaks in world history.

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Don’t Get Stuck in a Pickle

SpreadingFlu_m_0102So, you’re in a pickle. Imagine you are going into the biggest job interview of your career, and you notice the interviewer seems to be under the weather during a record breaking flu season. Do you shake his hand? Or do you politely decline? Declining a handshake in any situation has the potential to be offensive. These are just one of the many situations you might run into during the flu season. To avoid an awkward encounter AND the flu, here are a few tips you can follow to keep the flu away!

1.) Stay home- If you are under the weather, and you have the opportunity to stay home to get well, that is your best option; however, we know that being sick isn’t always the ideal situation.

2.) Keep hand sanitizer on hand- Hand sanitizer, alcohol based, or non-alcohol based is a great way to clean your hands after you have been in a crowd or any place in public. It is smart to use hand sanitizer after touching anything that might be harboring the flu virus or dangerous germs. (i.e. someone that is ill and still contagious, door knobs, railings, public telephones, etc.)

3.) Wash your hands thoroughly -Take extra care in washing your hands. We recommend using hot or cold water, a strong antibacterial soap, and scrubbing for good 20 seconds in-between fingers, around your wrists and under your nails. Also, make sure you wash your hands thoroughly before eating. Regular hand washing can drastically decrease your chances of picking up and transferring dangerous germs and bacteria.

Stay tuned for Part Two: “Don’t be THAT Person”. A blog that will give you great insight on how to reduce your chances of transferring your sickness to someone else when YOU are the one sick.

LesLeeLesLee Winfield is the Digital Marketing Coordinator at Betco Corporation. During her spare time, LesLee enjoys running, movies, and spending time with her family. Click here to contact LesLee directly.

Germs, Germs, Everywhere!

Get this…the average student gets between 6 to 10 colds per year. The fact is colds and flu cause more doctor visits and missed school days than any other illness. So how can parents and school administration work together to prevent thcold and flu in school blogis?

Here are 5 ways to achieve this:

1.) Get Immunized – Prevention is the best medicine. Keep up to date on scheduled immunizations for school-aged children. Remember, vaccines only work against specific types of influenza virus for which it was designed for. There is no universal vaccine that will protect you against common cold viruses.

2.) WASH YOUR HANDS! One of the most common ways of catching a cold or flu is not washing your hands often enough or well enough at school. Studies have shown middle and high school students about half washed their hands after using the bathroom and only 33% of girls and 8% of boys used soap!

3.) Provide Hand Sanitizer – When soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. To make it effective, you should rub the product all over the surfaces of your hands and fingers until dry which is about 30 seconds. Note: Children under the age of six should not use without supervision.

4.) Proper Germ Etiquette – Cover coughs and sneezes to prevent spreading germs if you think you may have the cold or flu. Sneeze into a tissue and discard then continue to wash your hands!

5.) Beware of Germ Spots (Touch points) – Studies have shown that bacteria levels are 80% higher on drinking fountains and locker doors than on a toilet seat. Likely because toilet seats get cleaned regularly.

“Stopping germs where they breed is the best preventative action.”

Here is a great resource on how to survive cold and flu season!

Krysten Comperchio_jpgKrysten Comperchio is a Product Manager for Skin Care and Education at Betco Corporation. During her spare time, Krysten enjoys yoga, running and keeping up on current events. Click here to contact Krysten directly.

Part One – Cold and Flu Season

How to Avoid Getting a Cold
Chances are at some point in your life, you have come down with the common cold and flu. There currently is no known cure for the cold; however, researchers have learned plenty about how cold viruses spread. Respiratory droplets such as coughing and sneezing, are the easiest ways to pass along your cold.

Rhinoviruses and H1N1 can also be transmitted by touching contaminated surfaces, handshakes, and other personal contact. These surfaces are known as touch points. If you get cold viruses on your fingers, you might touch your nose or eyes without even knowing it; the two key entry points for a living virus. From there, cold viruses quickly reach nasal passages, where they take a life of their own and begin multiplying at a rapid rate.

Be Careful What You Touch!
Rhinoviruses and H1N1 can survive on doorknobs, table tops, shopping cart handles and other surfaces for more than 24 hours. Avoid these pesky germs by using an alcohol foaming hand sanitizer. Clario® Alcohol Foaming Hand Sanitizer and Clario® Alcohol Gel Sanitizer come in convenient package sizes for use in commercial environments or smaller sample sizes for easy access when on the go!

The key in preventing the flu, is to wash your hands frequently! Washing your hancold and fluds can be one of the easiest ways to prevent germs, but the question is, are you doing it properly?

How to properly wash your hands:

• Rub your hands together with soap and warm water
• Scrub the fronts and backs and in between your fingers for at least 20 seconds
• Rinse your hands with clean water and dry them with a paper towel. Do not use your clothing to dry your hands, you will be amazed at the number of people who do!
• Use a hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol is a great back-up plan if soap and water available

*FUN FACT: Did you know that paper towels are a sanitary means for drying your hands and that an electric air dryer actually just spreads more germs! See how the H1N1 virus is impacting an area around you here!

Stay tuned for Part Two to come on Cold and Flu Prevention!
Krysten Comperchio_jpgKrysten Comperchio is a Product Manager for Skin Care and Education at Betco Corporation. During her spare time, Krysten enjoys yoga, running and keeping up on current events. Click here to contact Krysten directly.

Global Hand Washing Day

The Power is in your Hands”… Global Hand Washing day is today, October 15th, but practicing hand hygiene daily with soap helps reduce the risk of transmitting disease. Hands are vectors that carry disease-causing pathogens from person to person either through direct contact or indirectly by touching hard surfaces. The guiding vision of Global Hand Washinhand_washingg Day is a local and global culture of hand washing with soap. People from around the world wash their hands with water, but very few use soap at the most critical moments such as, using the restroom, handling food, sneezing, etc.. Washing hands with water alone is not enough. Hand washing requires soap and water. Soap helps break down the grease and dirt that carry most germs, while the rubbing and friction during hand washing helps rinse away the disease causing germs.

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The Benefits of Cleaning with Oxygen

peroxide vs bleachWe are living in the age of increased awareness on the impact of our actions, with regards to the environment and quality of life. Gone are the days of having to face the hazards of toxic chemicals in order to clean a facility. There are now preferred cleaning chemicals that are quickly taking the place of their hazardous counterparts. While many facilities are discontinuing the use of toxic chemicals, one culprit still exists, Chlorine Bleach. Many feel that chlorine bleach is the best option; however, Hydrogen Peroxide is a better substitute, not only with regards to cleaning and disinfection, but also for the environment and facility surfaces.

There are several negative drawbacks of bleach including:
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The 5 Factors of Clean

When it comes to dish machine operation in a Dietary Department of a Long Term Care Facility, there are many variables that dictate how efficient your warewashing operation is. In my world, all of these variables fall into one of five categories called the 5 Factors of Clean. They include Time, Temperature, Chemical Action, Mechanical Action and Procedures.
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3 Simple Ways to Create a Cleaner Restroom

Let’s face it: restroom cleanliness is important no matter what facility you visit. They say that we spend an average of 1.5 years of our lives in a restroom and whether we know it or not, we all subliminally judge a facility’s cleanliness by the upkeep of the restroom. Does it smell clean? Are there papers on floor? Does the chrome shine? Does the counter top area look clean? Is the porcelain white? Are the garbage receptacles empty? So why not make the restroom a focal point of your cleaning standards. In fact, restroom cleanliness was so important to Ed Rensi (former CEO of McDonalds) that he devoted an entire afternoon to the importance of notion.

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Is Superbug Prevention Worthless?

It seems like the news is filled with a new Superbug every week; the latest Superbug is CRE (carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae). Other notable Superbugs are Methicillin-resistant Preventing MRSAStaphylococcus aureus (MRSA), Escherichia coli (e.coli), and Clostridium difficile (c.Diff). Superbugs are a strain of bacteria that have become resistant to anti-biotics. To answer the title above, NO, superbug prevention is not worthless. Look at it this way, an ounce of disinfection goes a long way in prevention. This means that the importance of your janitorial staff will become more critical to the health and liability of your facility. Some health care institutions have gone to the extreme of employing a robotic device to disinfect at risk rooms with a toxic level of hydrogen peroxide. While this might work for institutions with an abundance of financial resources; those institutions with fewer financial resources will find it difficult to institute these measures. So, what prevention measures should be taken to lower superbug-related liability for health care facilities especially long term care facilities?

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The Ultimate Guide to Beating Hospital-Acquired Infections

With the onset of antibacterial products and modern scientific advancements, it seems a safe assumption that we are winning the battle against infection. In actuality, the fight continues againstHealthcare Acquired Infections new, more resistant disease-causing microorganisms.

A primary area for concern in health care facilities is hospital acquired infections (HAI)—which rank among the top 10 most frequent causes of death in the United States. In response to the growing number of HAIs, as well as to the number of immune-deficient patients, health care organizations have an increased awareness and interest in cleanliness, sanitation, and disinfection techniques. Across the U.S., health care facilities are implementing programs that help maintain a cleaner, healthier environment that can stop HIAs before they occur.

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Managing the Severity of Bedsores and Skin Irritations

Although the pH level in sheets, pillowcases, and pads is not a main cause of bedsores in healthcare facilities, a high pH level can certainly contribute to the severity of bedsores, as well as reducing bed sorescause very uncomfortable skin irritations and rashes in patients. It is for those reasons that a healthcare facility should always rely on a laundry chemical provider that has a proven track record, especially in healthcare facilities.

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5 Simple Steps To Preventing Hospital Acquired Infections in Healthcare Facilities

Did you know…

  • Beating HAIs220,000 incidents of Health Care Acquired Infections (HAI’s) result in 8,000 deaths per year?
  • 1 in 9 patients admitted to a hospital or healthcare facility develop an HAI?
  • HAI’s are the 4th highest cause of death (behind Cancer, Heart Disease and Stroke)?
  • Organisms can live up to 60 minutes on your hands – increases are on the rise of new drug-resistant organisms?

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