Hands, whether gloved or ungloved, are among the main ways of spreading infection and for transferring microbial contamination. The utilization of hand disinfectants is area of the means of good contamination control for personnel working in hospital environments, or those involved with aseptic processing and within cleanrooms. Although there are lots of several types of hand sanitizers available there are differences using their effectiveness and several do not meet the European standard for hand sanitization.
Personnel working in hospitals and cleanrooms carry various kinds of microorganisms on their hands and such microorganisms could be readily transferred from person to person or from person to equipment or critical surfaces. Such microorganisms are either present on your skin not multiplying (transient flora, which can include a variety of environmental microorganisms like Staphylococcus and Pseudomonas) or are multiplying microorganisms released from your skin (residential flora like the genera of Staphylococcus, Micrococcus and Propionibacterium). Of the two groups, residential flora are far more difficult to remove. For critical operations, some protection is afforded by wearing gloves. However gloves are not ideal for all activities and gloves, if not regularly sanitized or if they are of an unsuitable design, will get and transfer contamination.
Therefore, the sanitization of hands (either gloved or ungloved) is a significant part of contamination control either in hospitals, to avoid staff-to-patient cross contamination or just before undertaking clinical or surgical procedures; and for aseptic preparations such as the dispensing of medicines. Moreover, not merely is the utilization of a hand sanitizer needed just before undertaking such applications, it can also be important that the sanitizer is effective at eliminating a top population of bacteria. Studies show when a low number of microorganisms persist after the application of a sanitizer then a subpopulation can develop that is resistant to future applications.
There are many commercially available hand sanitisers with the most commonly used types being alcohol-based liquids or gels. Much like other forms of disinfectants, hand sanitizers are effective against different microorganisms depending upon their mode of activity 70% Alcohol. Most abundant in common alcohol based hand sanitizers, the mode of action contributes to bacterial cell death through cytoplasm leakage, denaturation of protein and eventual cell lysis (alcohols are among the so-called’membrane disrupters’). The features of employing alcohols as hand sanitizers incorporate a relatively low cost, little odour and a quick evaporation (limited residual activity results in shorter contact times). Furthermore alcohols have an established cleansing action.
In selecting a hand sanitiser the pharmaceutical organisation or hospital should consider if the application is to be made to human skin or even to gloved hands, or even to both, and if it is needed to be sporicidal. Hand sanitisers fall into two groups: alcohol based, which are far more common, and non-alcohol based. Such considerations impact both upon cost and medical and safety of the staff using the hand sanitiser because so many commonly available alcohol based sanitisers can cause excessive drying of your skin; and some non-alcohol based sanitisers could be irritating to the skin. Alcohol hand sanitizers are created to avoid irritation through possessing hypoallergenic properties (colour and fragrance free) and ingredients which afford skin protection and care through re-fatting agents.
Alcohols have a lengthy history of use as disinfectants due to inherent antiseptic properties against bacteria and some viruses. To be effective some water must be combined with alcohol to exert effect against microorganisms, with the most effective range falling between 60 and 95% (most commercial hand sanitizers are about 70%). The most commonly used alcohol based hand sanitisers are Isopropyl alcohol or some kind of denatured ethanol (such as Industrial Methylated Spirits). The more common non-alcohol based sanitisers contain either chlorhexidine or hexachlorophene. Additives can also be included in hand sanitizers in order to increase the antimicrobial properties.
Before entering a hospital ward or clean area hands should be washed using soap and water for around twenty seconds. Handwashing removes around 99% of transient microorgansisms (although it does not kill them) (4). From then on, whether gloves are worn or not, regular hygienic hand disinfection should take place to remove any subsequent transient flora and to reduce the chance of the contamination arising from resident skin flora.
The manner of hand sanitisation is of great importance because the effectiveness is not merely with the alcohol but also pertains to the’rub-in’technique. Like:
-Dispense a little bit of hand gel onto the palm of just one hand by
-pressing down on the pump dispenser
-Put hands together and check out rub the hand gel into both hands. Pay particular focus on the next areas:
-Back of hands
-Between webs of fingers
-Allow hands to dry, this would take only 60 seconds
Regular applications of the hand sanitizer are expected and also just before carrying out critical activities. This is because alcohols are relatively volatile and do not supply a continual antimicrobial action. Although microorgansisms are taken off material like latex more readily than from skin, a typical frequency of hand sanitization should still be placed on gloves.
You can find very few safety concerns with hand sanitizers and the occupational exposure is relatively low, although this will build up in enclosed spaces. Care should be studied when using sanitizers near naked flames (which can occur where gas burners are found in laboratories).
In summary, hand sanitisation is a significant procedure for staff to check out in healthcare and pharmaceutical settings. Hand sanitization is among the main methods for avoiding the spread of infection in hospitals and contamination within pharmaceutical operations. This required level of control requires the utilization of an effective hand sanitizer.