Hand Sanitizing in the Workplace

Dr. Syed Farhan Ali Tirmizi, MBBS, MSc – Epidemiologist

Hand Sanitizing in the Workplace Guidelines

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Handwashing is an effective way of protecting oneself from the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), but it is not always a viable option. That’s where hand sanitizers with 70% alcohol come in.

Where to Place Hand Sanitizers Within the Workplace

Place hand sanitizers with 70% alcohol in high-traffic areas, such as:

  • Entrances and Exits
  • Workstations
  • Beside Office Equipment
  • Canteens and/or Food Courts
  • Break Rooms
  • Meeting Rooms
  • Near the Elevators

How to Install Hand Sanitizers Near the Elevators

  • Use a holder to place hand sanitizers with 70% alcohol near the elevators.
  • Another option is using a 3m or a high-bond double-sided tape to place the sanitizer to elevator surfaces. Ensure that these surfaces are dry and clean.
  • Tying the sanitizer to the railings will also do.

Please forward the following recommendations to your (department/team).

When to Use Hand Sanitizers

  • Use a hand sanitizer with 70% alcohol only when handwashing facilities are not easily accessible.

How to Make Your Own Hand Sanitizer

  • If you are having a hard time looking for a hand sanitizer with 70% alcohol in supermarkets, a homemade one can be a great alternative.
  • The hand sanitizer recipe below is effective in killing 99.9% of germs after 60 seconds.
Ingredients
  • 3/4 cup of 99% isopropyl or rubbing alcohol
  • 1/4 cup of aloe vera gel
  • 10 drops of lavender oil or lemon juice
Directions
  1. Prepare a clean bowl and an empty bottle.
  2. Pour all the ingredients into the bowl.
  3. Mix the ingredients with a spoon and beat them with a whisk.
  4. Wait until the mixture turns into a gel.
  5. Pour the gel into the bottle.
Caution
  • Seek help from experts when you become exposed to more health risks.
  • Using incorrect hand sanitizer ingredients may lead to:
    • Ineffectiveness in removing germs from the hands
    • Unwanted skin reactions
    • Inhalation of dangerous chemicals

“Show Me the Science – When & How to Use Hand Sanitizer in Community Settings.” CDC.
LINK. Accessed 14 April 2020.

Faivre, Isabelle. “The Importance of Hand Sanitizer Placement in the Workplace.” deb, 13 March 2020.
LINKAccessed 14 April 2020

“How to Clean and Disinfect Schools to Help Slow the Spread of Flu.” CDC.
LINK.Accessed 14 April 2020 

Lindberg, Sara.“How to Make Your Own Hand Sanitizer.” Healthline, 13 March 2020.
LINK. Accessed 14 April 2020.

Ashworth, Boone. “How to Make Your Own Hand Sanitizer.” Wired, 15 April 2020.
LINK. Accessed 14 April 2020.

Written By

Dr. Syed Farhan Ali Tirmizi, MBBS, MSc

Epidemiologist

Communicable Disease Control (CDC), Alberta Health Services

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