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Did you know? Hospitality Hand Hygiene

16 August 2018

Did you know?

Germs spread more quickly than you think. Most are passed from hand to hand. Careful hand hygiene is the most important means of defence against contagious diseases.

Hand hygiene is so important! Approximately 80% of all contagious diseases are transmitted via our hands – that figure comes from the World Health Organisation (WHO). This includes, for example, diseases like colds, flu and stomach bugs. “The germs themselves do not present a direct health risk on your hands and fingers,” explained Prof. Dr. med. Klaus-Dieter Zastrow, a specialist in hygiene and environmental medicine and Head of the REGIOMED-KLINIKEN hygiene institute in Coburg, Germany. “However, most people touch their mouth, nose and eyes regularly – putting their hands to their face up to five times an hour. This allows the germs to enter the body unimpeded via the mucous membranes.” Many studies have investigated and confirmed that hand-washing truly helps reduce the occurrence of contagious diseases. On the basis of different studies, it is estimated that thorough washing of hands with soap and water almost halves the risk of disease.

In Ireland, The Public Service Sick Leave Statistics for 2017 show the rate of sick leave at 4% and on average 8.8 working days were taken per full-time employee in the Public Service.

The overall cost of sick leave is estimated at €341.5 million for 2017.

German companies incur costs of around €130 billion a year due to employee sickness. That works out about €3,600 per person.

  • 90% of colds are caused by viruses.
  • Flu viruses can remain active on surfaces for 48 hours.
  • 80% of all contagious diseases are transmitted via our hands.

You can slash the risk of catching a cold virus by 50% simply by washing your hands.