Educating the importance of good hand hygiene along with maintaining a clean working environment could make a difference. SARS hit the GTA hard in 2003. Since then, there have been many changes implemented to prepare for a pandemic. We all need to do our part whether at work, home, school, or play.
Following the H1N1 - Swine Flu 2009
As of February 12, 2010 there were 427 deaths reported in Canada
October 1st announced a 14% increase from 1% the week prior for H1N1 flu cases tested and reported in the GTA. June 11th -WHO raises Pandemic Alert Level to Phase 6. Looking back to May 1st, 2009 an estimated 35 cases reported in the Canada, 4 from Durham Region. Are you prepared? Visit a Public Health Agency of Canada for more information. As of July 23rd, Public Health is no longer tracking laboratory reported cases of H1N1. Last report as of July 15, 2009 - 10,156 cases of H1N1 in Canada (3,636 in Ontario, ) and 45 deaths. The worst is yet to come this fall. Are people taking this seriously? Observing preventative measures: 5 second hand rinse, cough in hands, touching everything as usual, including doors, etc. People still going to work sick and out in public spreading their germs. What are you doing to protect yourself? Since SARS hit in 2003 we have increased our level of hand hygiene and cleanliness. Knowing now what we didn't know then...will it make a difference?
Workplace and school environments are filled with germs that can be passed around and brought home. These germs are transferred from a common area; touching a surface or from person to person via droplets. Health Departments are educating to Cover your cough or sneeze in your sleeve not your hands. Remember hands transfer over 80% of germs. Here are some tips to help prevent the spread of germs that cause illness.
Effective Hand Hygiene:
Wash your hands regularly. In public areas, use paper towel or tissue to turn off taps after rinsing your hands, and use the tissue to open doors.
sanitizers with you and use as needed. For instruction posters visit
any Ministry of Health website to view or download; Facts About Hand
washing, Hand washing and Hand Sanitizer posters:
Pandemic Planning Kits are available on many Government sites. Be sure
to check it out!
A disinfectant works most efficiently on surfaces that have been thoroughly cleaned first. Reduce germs in your work environment by keeping your surfaces clean. Equipment such as telephones, keyboards, computer mice, and cash machines are surfaces that are important to keep clean since they are frequently touched by you and others. Printers, copiers and fax machines are also shared equipment, which can expose you to germs. Be aware when touching your face, your eyes, nose or mouth when you come in contact with any touch areas.