National center for infection control professionals, healthcare experts, manufacturers, distributors, suppliers and consumers focused on best practices in hand hygiene and hand sanitizer products

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Hand Hygiene Guru-Allen Soden

If anyone is seeking expert opinion on the topic of hand hygiene and appropriate hand sanitizers, then our pick is Allen Soden-the President of DEB SBS. For more than 20 years, Allen has been the go-to-guy for the world's biggest brands, a consigliere to health care and municipal facilities, a guru to school system administrators, and his prescience is unmatched..

This is a fellow whose hand you absolutely want to shake! There's Allen in his Charlotte-based facility>>>>>>>

Consumers Raise Their Hands With Product Testimonials i.e. Alcohol Free Hand Sanitizers

We love when manufacturers share their customer testimonials---this sent in from the popular guys and gals at "Soapopular brand"...which is apparently ranked #2 on Amazon in the hand sanitizer category and Top 5 in the child healthcare product category.

Dear Soapopular:

I found out about your product by doing a search at Amazon. My son used to use the foaming hand sanitizer from Bath and Body Works - they had grape, banana, etc - but they've stopped making it. They only have perfume-y varieties now. So I went looking for another source. We tried one bottle of the Purell foaming sanitizer, and it was awful - it smelled strongly of alcohol and the foam just wouldn't "dissolve" into your hands. But your product seems perfect because it's not alcohol based and it has no fragrance

Again, thanks for your quick response - I really appreciate your great service!

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Hepatitis A Alert: Alcohol Hand Sanitizer NOT effective

In connection with recent reports from New York City of hepatitis outbreaks, local talking heads have looked to 'medical experts' who are recommending alcohol based hand sanitizers--proving that many 'experts' are merely voicing misconceptions that are now more than 10 years old.

Again--many alcohol-FREE products (primarily those using benzalkonium chloride as the active agent)--have been tested to be effective against Hepatitis

More importantly, below taken directly from Purell's website:

Does PURELL kill viruses?

"..we cannot make any claims as to PURELL's effectiveness against viruses, such as colds, flu, SARS, HIV or Hepatitis..."

Does PURELL kill SARS?

There is no evidence that PURELL or any alcohol-based hand sanitizer kills the SARS virus.

Is PURELL flammable?

PURELL is flammable, but a flame, spark or other ignition source would be needed.

Independent research: 1999 FDA White Paper
. Alcohols

Alcohol was immediately effective product against bacteria but had limited residual activity (Docket C-3; Paulson, 1994; Coates et al., 1987; Larson, 1995; Butz et al., 1990; Ayliffe et al., 1988; Aly and Maibach, 1979; Larson et al., 1986; Paulson,1994; Ly et al.,1997).

Alcohols were not as effective against viruses such as hepatitis A (Mbithi et al., 1993). Alcohol applied to hands for as short as 15 seconds has been found to be effective in preventing transmission of Gram-negative bacteria (Larson, 1995).

Bacterial counts were found to increase after very frequent washing and with the use of alcohol sanitizers (Miller, 1994). Alcohol gel sanitizers that do not require rinsing may be ineffective on their own due to the fact that there is no mechanical action to wash away bacteria (Paulson, 1994; Miller, 1994;Docket C-8).

Thus the end result may be increased resident bacteria, including pathogenic S. aureus, on the hands. As they dry, alcohol products may pull resident bacteria from deeper skin layers, thus an increase in resident bacterial counts may be noticed (Docket C-8). Antiseptic handrubs, such as alcohol gel sanitizers, can be used only to inhibit microorganisms, without any mechanical effect on soil removal (Larson, 1995).

Alcohols are not cleaning agents; therefore, they are not recommended for use in the presence of physical dirt (Larson, 1995; Docket C-8). Due to the shortcomings of alcohol sanitizers in the presence of soil, the build-up of emollients after repeated use, and the lack of effectiveness against certain viruses, it is recommended that hands be washed before alcohol application (Docket C-3; Restaino and Wind, 1990;Docket C-8)

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Idaho Schools Ban Alcohol Hand Sanitizers

Yet another state added to the list...Explaining why manufacturers of alcohol-free alternatives are filling a critical void in helping schools battle MRSA, and other commonly-transmitted germs/bacteria and viruses

Florida School Ban Alcohol Hand Sanitizers

Interesting that attached is one of numerous mandates prohibiting alcohol hand sanitizers, yet CDC officials will claim they're not aware of the issue.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Retailers nationwide stocking alcohol free hand sanitizers

One of several recent news stories indicating that product buyers for major retailers are embracing the consumer-driven demand for alcohol-free hand sanitizers... bravo!

The High Cost of Absenteeism: It's Enough to Make You Sick

So, what's the big deal about germs on your desk? About $789 per employee per year. That's what employers can lose due to lost productivity, replacement, and related expenses when just one employee calls in sick. According to a Mercer Human Resource Consulting study, companies spend 15% of payroll on absenteeism.For an employee earning, $40,000 annually, this translates into $6,000 paid time away from work.

The trouble with germs is you can't see them. But they're always there -- nestled in your keyboard, lounging on the space bar. When it comes to a typical office, germs are in startling abundance. In fact, a University of Arizona study found that every square inch of a typical telephone contains more than 25,000 live microbes. To put that number into perspective, consider that the average toilet seat contains only 49 live microbes.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

School Nurses :Reach Out for Alcohol-Free hand sanitizer

From Nurse News blog:
"..Children are especially susceptible to the symptoms of alcohol poisoning, i.e., altered level of consciousness, slow respirations, cold, clammy, pale or bluish skin, and the presence of alcohol on the breath. Because hand sanitizers are often left where chidren can easily access them, it’s important to remember they are not packaged in child-proof containers. They are often scented and colored, which make them more appealing to young children.

Suggestions for keeping your child safe:

*Keep hand sanitizers out of sight and reach as you would prescription drugs.
*Always supervise children when using this product.
*Look for new alcohol-free hand sanitizers.
*Use soap and water when possible.

University of Pittsburgh Medical Center: BAC and MRSA

Francis S. Mah, MD, assistant professor of ophthalmology and co-medical director of the Charles T. Campbell Eye Microbiology Laboratory at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.

"...He added, however, that resistance based on in vitro data may be over-reported in the ophthalmology literature because that determination is based on serum susceptibility standards. In fact, results of a study evaluating the activity of a variety of antibiotics against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) showed that in vitro antibiotic resistance can be overcome in vivo with intensive therapy.

"In this study evaluating gatifloxacin, vancomycin [Vancocin, ViroPharma], levofloxacin, ciprofloxacin [Ciloxan, Alcon], and cefazolin [Apothecon], only vancomycin should have been effective for MRSA eradication, but gatifloxacin also significantly reduced the bacterial counts and was equivalent to cefazolin and vancomycin," Dr. Mah said.

Another issue to consider when evaluating in vitro susceptibility data is that those studies are performed using pure antibiotic rather than commercially available formulations. The relevance of that fact with respect to ophthalmic antibiotic preparations is that the preservative benzalkonium chloride (BAK) can increase the speed of microbial kill.

"In a rabbit model of MRSA infection, we showed the combination of gatifloxacin plus BAK hastened the speed of recovery compared with gatifloxacin alone," Dr. Mah said ..."

Primary Election Voters Press Soapopular button

Voters in Chicagoland were provided the opportunity to sanitize their hands before and after pressing the voting machine buttons.

Geneva, Ill Schools: Alcohol Free Hand Sanitizers to fight MRSA

Yet another school system that has implemented alcohol-free hand sanitizer dispensers in response to MRSA concerns.

Teen Charged For Sniffing GermX Alcohol Hand Sanitizer

Even we'd agree that the story is a bit wacky--but it does illuminate the underlying concerns about how teens are re-purposing alcohol-based hand sanitizers.

Middle School Student charged and arrested for using a hand-sanitizer in class. Case dismissed by prosecutors after admitting a mistake was made. Police compare to 'smoking a joint in class' or 'drinking alcohol in class'.

Dallas, TX (PRWEB) January 30, 2008 -- Charges were dropped against the Lewisville teenager that was arrested and charged with sniffing a hand--sanitizer gel.

J. Michael Price II, the attorney for the teenager, was pleased that the Denton County District Attorney's Office did the right thing. "My client and I are very happy that this matter has been resolved successfully. This has been a trying time for him and his entire family the last three months. This matter should have never been prosecuted."

The youth, a student at Killian Middle School in Lewisville, Texas, was accused in October 2007 of 'sniffing' or 'huffing' a common alcohol-based hand sanitizer, "Germ-X" after class. The hand-sanitizer was provided by the teacher for use in the classroom. "My client innocently smelled his hands a few times because he thought 'it smelled good'", Price stated. "The teacher thought he was sniffing it in a manner to try and get intoxicated. The Lewisville Police believed a crime had occurred. He was booked into custody, fingerprinted, a mug-shot taken, then released to his father."

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Japanese Journal of Infectious Diseases: Benzalkonium Chloride

General theories on the inactivation of viruses in the presence of a concentrated protein, such as the allantoic fluid of chicken eggs, are not useful. That is, although sodium hypochlorite and sodium hydroxide are generally known as strong virucidal agents, they do not sufficiently inactivate viruses in allantoic fluid. We found that benzalkonium chloride (BC) is an effective virucidal agent against influenza, Newcastle disease, and avian infectious bronchitis viruses even in the presence of a concentrated protein. BC is easily biodegradable by activated sludge and is not very harmful to humans. We strongly recommend ...
Source: Japanese Journal of Infectious Diseases - November 1, 2007 Category: Infectious Diseases Authors: Abe M, Kaneko K, Ueda A, Otsuka H, Shiosaki K, Nozaki C, Goto S Tags: Jpn J Infect Dis Source Type: journals

Friday, February 1, 2008

Enviromental Issue-Hand Sanitizers-

An alcohol-free hand sanitizer means you are not placing any demand on water pumping or sewage treatment infrastructure, you are not using paper towels or powered blowers to dry your hands in a lavatory and you are not introducing alcohol-based evaporative byproducts to the atmosphere.