What about hand rubs?
Hand rubs are an additional precaution. They should not replace hand washing but can prevent cross contamination when moving to different areas. It is good practice for hand rubs to comply with BS EN 1500; check with your supplier.
Research has shown longer durability of anti bacterial barrier/moisturising creams over the conventional alcohol based products as they provide longer resistance or inhibition for pathogen bacteria and are more user friendly.
Alcohol based hand sanitisers provide an instant kill rate for most pathogenic bacteria, but the effect is short lived and leaves a favourable environment for re-infection and multiplication of bacteria. Excessive use can lead to dermatitis susceptibility, which in turn makes the individual less keen to use it and a rougher skin surface with more terrain for bacteria to lurk.
How do you use hand rubs so your hands don’t become contaminated? Food handlers must be trained and supervised in correct techniques. Take time to observe your staff; are they washing their hands properly at appropriate times?
“Glo germ” kits are a great training tool for hand washing.
When to wash
Wash and dry hands before handling food, or surfaces likely to come into contact with food, especially after going to the toilet.
Make it a must that you clean hands before and after handling food or eating. It should not be an option to say that your ‘hands are pretty clean’ or that you ‘haven’t touched anything particularly dirty’
Hand washing should take place after…
- Touching hair, nose, mouth or ears
- Eating, smoking, coughing or blowing nose
- Handling external packaging
- Handling waste food or refuse
- Cleaning, or handling dirty crockery, utensils, cloths or cleaning tools
- Shaking hands
- Handling money
- Touching shoes, floor or other dirty surfaces
- Before and after putting gloves on
- Routinely throughout the day
When not to come in to work. Recognising illness and preventing contamination.
An member of staff will not be allowed to handle food or enter a food handling area if they:
- Are suffering from or carrying a disease likely to be transmitted through food
- Have infected wounds, skin infections or sores
- Have diarrhoea
- Skin condition flare ups
- Heavy colds
If any of these apply, the correct protocol is to let your line manager know as soon as possible.
If a member of staff is suffering from diarrhea or vomiting, they should not return to work until they have had no symptoms for 48 hours. The following guide will provide a detailed breakdown of the rules and legislation that covers when individuals should and should not return to work.