We find ourselves washing our hands more than usual, spraying and wiping down all surfaces like high touch points like door knobs and handles!
In fact, workplaces now enforce a tough regime of cleaning and a high level of hygiene as businesses go back to work in the ‘new normal world’. But is all this being done correctly?
Here’s some food for thought. Did you know that 80% of infections are spread by touch (Source: Copper Development Association)? Many of us are used to giving a surface a quick spray, followed by a wipe or two. But that may not allow enough time for the product to work. Moreover, did you know lots of products are only anti bacterial and not anti-viral? So, the product you’re using may not be effective in the first place. It’s also worth noting that some products maybe effective against some basic viruses and not others. And once you start reading labels on cleaning products closely, it gets really confusing. Before the pandemic, we didn’t really pay a lot of attention to labels, but now it’s much more important and will remain that way.
When you look closely at disinfectant wipes and spray cleaners, they all have different instructions on their labels for how long the product should stay on a surface to effectively kill germs, ranging from 30 seconds to four minutes or even as long as 10 minutes! What’s more, some labels recommend cleaning before using a disinfectant. Products are inactivated by a dirty surface, so you need a product that cleans and disinfects for normal everyday use. Many products on the market are tested in clean conditions that do not reflect real life so even if they have test against viruses they may not demonstrate efficacy in the real world.
So what’s the right way to clean?
Stuart Hay, Managing Director at Bioguard has a very interesting perspective on one’s cleaning regime. Hay is constantly in touch with infectious disease scientists and microbiologists who study and test cleaning products all the time. Thus, he ensures that the products they sell at Bioguard provide the correct scientific information. Hay says, “Whether you’re worried about coronavirus or other germs, many of us are cleaning too fast for the disinfectant to do its job. You probably need to let your disinfectant stay on the surface you’re cleaning for far longer than you think. So, just spray it and leave it on the surface before you wipe off. The longer you can let it be in contact, the better; I wait roughly a minute if I’m applying a spray product and then wipe off.”
To find out the recommended time for a specific product, check the label. The guidance could range from 30 seconds to several minutes of contact time before you wipe.
Product test efficacy
To ensure maximum protection you need to check if the product you are using has been tested to the following standards:-
- European test standard EN 14476 tests virucidal efficacy - especially corona viruses. The product have been tested against enveloped and non-enveloped viruses for maximum protection.
- European test standard EN13727 tests bactericidal efficacy, which will confirm efficacy against harmful organisms such as MRSA and e-coli.
- European test standard EN13074 tests sporicidal efficacy, which will confirm efficacy against harmful organisms such as C.Diff spores.
Bacteria and Viruses?
Something even more important to note is the type of product to buy. Note that some products may claim to sanitise, which means they reduce the level of certain bacteria, but not viruses. A disinfectant claim means the product destroys or inactivates both the bacteria and viruses noted on the label and it must state on the label that viruses are killed as well as bacteria otherwise all the hard work you have been doing to combat viruses such as Coronavirus will have been in vain!
If you are using a cleaning company to clean your offices, make sure they are using the correct products too. Don’t be afraid to ask them what products they use and the protocol they ask their cleaners to follow. At the end of the day, it is your responsibility to ensure cleaning guidance is followed in your workplace.
Which is the best cleaner to get rid of coronavirus?
Product labels will say specifically what types of bacteria and viruses have been tested. But because SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes Covid-19, is so new, most cleaning products haven’t been tested against it.
You can imagine that our knowledge and experience in this field is pretty good, which is why we choose to purchase products from Bioguard for our customers. We know their products are tested to the highest British and European standards and kill both bacteria and viruses, so are suitable for the current hygiene requirements.
Just ask us if you need advice or are worried about the products you have been using, contact Mujahed Hussain, Managing Director, Safe Trading Co., +971554723021