And up in Yellowstone National Park where you go to see the beauty of natur e, the vision of Teddy Roosevelt, and some of the creatures not otherwi se often seen (and try to convince certain tourists NOT to approach a small Grizzley Bear too closely, because Mama Bear would be on them in a heart beat) -- Safety is always the primary concern. When you have the "n ecessaries" and they are few and far between, mostly, they have the han d cleansing materials as you describe. Fine for those of us who hav e had to be involved in the SARS issues, or just "gotta" as Dr. Suess onc e said, etc.
NOT fine for chemical splash exposure decontamination. At least, please, refer to the ANSI/ISEA Standard Z358.1-2009 for emergency showers and eyewashes. Cristine Fargo at ISEA would very likely get you a copy (and the fee is small in comparison). http://www.safetyequipment.org. I have no fi nancial interest in this, but did work on it for some years. And the OSHA "Universal Precautions" standards for blood-borne pathogens make a great d eal of sense and should be followed. If I had a nickel for every ti me in a somewhat long medical career that we didn't protect ourselves from blood-borne pathogens, I could retire filthy rich in Dubai or somewhere ( I had started a small program at a major trauma center in Texas before AIDS was even recognized as a real issue). Most of us lived through it: better to be lucky than smart, sometimes.
Short version of a long story: Yes, wash your hands with soap and water. We even teach this in the Advanced Hazardous Matierials Pro vider's Life-Support course (AHLS -- runs out of the University of Arizona in Tucson; www.ahls.org).
Alan H. Hall, M.D.
Colorado School of Public Health
We had an IH here with a masters de gree in public health who would use the hand sanitizer rather than washing her hands after using the restroom facilities. I still haven't gotten over that one. (For the record, the OSHA bloodborne pathogens standard require s that, when antiseptic hand cleansers or towelett es are used instead of soap and water, the employe es must wash their hands with soap and water ASAP.)
- Diane Amell, MNOSHA
From: DCHAS-L Discussion List [mailto:DCHAS
-L**At_Symbol_Here**list.uvm.edu] On Behalf Of Ben Ruekberg
Sent: Tuesday , April 13, 2010 1:29 PM
Subje ct: [DCHAS-L] Hand sanitizer
Our school has put hand sa nitizer dispensers all over campus. It has occurred to me that we s trongly encourage our students to wash their hands after labs and that some of them may mistakenly think that the application of hand sanitizer may ac complish this. (Sometimes, students do not distinguish between si milar different things well.)
Not only does one not rins e hand sanitizer off, but it is largely alcohol, which may increase ski n permeability. Students are given at least as much safety informat ion as they can assimilate already. Is this something worth worryin g about?
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