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Alcohol Hand-Sanitizer cuts the risk of MRSA

Moms View Message Board: General Discussion: Alcohol Hand-Sanitizer cuts the risk of MRSA
By Dawnk777 on Friday, December 12, 2008 - 12:25 am:

Got this in my work email today, regarding alcohol hand sanitizer.

WebMD Link

Hand Sanitizer Cuts *MRSA Risk

Daniel J. DeNoon
WebMD Health News 2008. © 2008 WebMD Inc.

December 5, 2008 Every dab of alcohol hand sanitizer used in British hospitals lowered multidrug-resistant staph (MRSA) infection rates by 1%, a U.K. study shows.

In-hospital infections -- particularly MRSA -- are a huge and growing problem. As part of the solution, the U.K. National Health Service in 2004 launched a national "clean your hands" campaign among health-care workers.

As part of the campaign, dispensers of alcohol hand sanitizer are placed next to each patient's bed. Posters encourage patients to ask every hospital worker they see whether they've washed their hands.

It's working, according to an evaluation of the campaign reported by Sheldon Stone of University College London Medical School at this week's meeting of the Federation of Infection Societies in Cardiff, Wales.

For every extra 1/5 teaspoonful of hand sanitizer used by a hospital, MRSA rates fell by 1%, Stone reported. The program led to a threefold increase in the amount of hand sanitizer and soap used in U.K. hospitals.

"The findings also serve as a reminder that we should be washing our hands in the home and workplace," Stone says in a news release. "Winter is the season when colds and flus abound, and people can protect themselves and stop germs from spreading by frequently washing their hands."

Although MRSA rates dropped during the "clean your hands" campaign, rates of another on-the-rise, difficult-to-eradicate bug -- Clostridium difficile or C. diff -- did not.


Federation of Infection Societies Scientific Meeting 2008, Cardiff, Wales, Dec. 2-4, 2008.

News release, University College London.

U.K. National Health Service, National Patient Safety Agency web site.

*Methicillin-Resistant Staph Aureus

By Karen~admin on Friday, December 12, 2008 - 09:18 am:

My MIL had MRSA when she was in hospice. I have become such a purse always has hand sanitizer in it and I wash wash wash my hands all the time.

By Reds9298 on Friday, December 12, 2008 - 09:40 am:

Interesting study Dawn.

I am the same. I think I became a germaphobe once I had Natalie, LOL. When we were at Disney (among other places!), and she ran her hands along all of those rails, rides, etc., I was cringing. She is also is in the habit now of nibbling her fingernails, so then those germs go right in her mouth, yuck!! I have Purell with us my purse, in my pocket. I love that stuff!

By Dawnk777 on Friday, December 12, 2008 - 03:53 pm:

I can't say I carry Purell with me, all the time, but I like using it at work and I bought some to keep at school, too, because sometimes kids put those packages in their mouth to try to open them, and THEN hand them to you to open. Yuck. Then I go use the hand sanitizer. I really meant to get in the habit of using it, when I'm done with the kindergarteners, since their hands must be dirty. I used to be better about that.

By Dramamamma on Friday, December 12, 2008 - 11:08 pm:

I go through purell like no tomorrow. I carry it in my purse, in my diaper bag, there's one in all the bathrooms, the kitchen, and in the car. Interesting study and makes me glad I'm so anal over it!lol...

By Karen~admin on Saturday, December 13, 2008 - 08:08 am:

Deanna, I know just what you mean!! My hands felt like they were cracking, I washed them so many times in the parks. Fortunately, all the Disney parks maintain their restrooms well and there was ALWAYS soap and hand towels, though the water was cold. :) But I carry Purell wipes, tiny bottle of Purell, or tiny bottle of an alcohol based foam cleaner at ALL times - and use them! Ditto with traveling/airports - I feel so dirty once I am home and can't wait to *wash the germs off*.

And I also drink Emergen-C daily when I'm traveling. I know I've gone off topic here a bit, but there are just so many germs out there and my immune system is not strong. Several years ago DH and I went on a 10 day cruise, and 3 weeks prior, they had just had an outbreak of that virus that goes around cruise ships this time of year. I packed one of those round containers of Clorox wipes and Lysol and completely wiped down every single surface in our cabin that we would touch as soon as we got into it. DH thought I was a bit nuts, I even wiped the hangers in the closet. But we stayed healthy! :) :)

By Dawnk777 on Saturday, December 13, 2008 - 01:27 pm:

Probably not a bad idea, Karen. Much closer to home, though, what about shopping carts? LOL! I think our store has wipes for the cart handles, but I never think of using them, when I'm there.

By Karen~admin on Saturday, December 13, 2008 - 01:59 pm:

Very few stores here have those wipes, Dawn. I use them at the few that do. However, the icky grocery store (only one near us is Winn Dixie and I HATE it) out here doesn't have the wipes, and I am always thinking of the bacteria on the cart handles AND the place where babies sit, which is where I would normally want to put my fresh vegies and/or bread. EWWWWWWWW

I am so conscious of the germs on those carts, that once I've unloaded all the bags from the car I thoroughly wash my hands AND wipe my steering wheel, keys and gear shift. I am just that phobic about it, especially since seeing a report on 20/20 or one of those type shows, maybe a cable show, on the amount of fecal bacteria on the grocery carts. It just grosses me out to think of the bacteria that can get into your food from them, or simply from your own hands, just from handling the carts.

By Mrs_B on Saturday, December 13, 2008 - 02:16 pm:

We have the disinfecting wipes at our store. :) I love it! I also carry my favorite foaming antibacterial cleanser from Bath and Body Works at all times. I keep one in each vehicle and one in my purse. They keep the germs away and smell lovely.

By Dawnk777 on Sunday, December 14, 2008 - 12:45 am:

Karen, ewwwww. We put so much stuff on the seat. Never thought much of the fact that babies sit there. I think I'm going to stop that now. (Although, admittedly, I'm still here, despite that.)

By Karen~admin on Sunday, December 14, 2008 - 09:50 am:

Well, yeah, Dawn, we are all still here, despite that. But seeing that show, just grossed me out so much, and think about it, ALL of us have seen moms plop babies in that seat in nothing more than a diaper and a T-shirt at some time, right?? I know *I* sure have around here, when temps are above 90 in the summer time - and I have never once seen anyone clean carts - they corral them, push a line of them from the parking lot right back into the store and into the cart line, and the next customer comes along and takes their fecal container (that was what they were called in the show - not kidding), and shops for next week's food, or tonight's dinner.

So I am flying my freak flag proudly! LOL :) :)

By Dawnk777 on Sunday, December 14, 2008 - 01:30 pm:

Yuck. I think my kids were always fully dressed, at the store! LOL! Of course, it's cold for so many months, too. Although, I think everything I've ever stuck there, has always had a box or a plastic bag around it.

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