Influenza Pandemic Preparedness:
Get Ready with Good Hand Hygiene
Experts agree that another influenza pandemic is inevitable and possibly imminent. In response to this threat, the federal government has issued plans and guidelines for preparedness, including the National Strategy for Pandemic Influenza and the Health and Human Services Pandemic Influenza Plan.
In the event of a pandemic, with limited availability of vaccine or antiviral medications, we will all need to rely heavily on basic hygiene practices to help stop the spread of germs. The federal plans include recommendations to:
Encourage workers to limit the spread of germs in the workplace by practicing good hand hygiene and covering their coughs (cough etiquette).
Provide an ample supply of easily accessible hand hygiene products, such as
antibacterial soap and water and alcohol-based hand sanitizers, as well as tissues.
Begin worker education on proper hand hygiene and cough etiquette immediately so that good habits are well established for every flu season.
There has never been a more critical time to provide hand hygiene products and educational materials in your facility.