Frequently asked questions
What is the difference between Disinfecting, Sanitizing, and Cleaning?
Cleaning refers to the physical removal of organic matter and debris from the surface. This includes dirt, dust, and allergens. Cleaning typically uses a detergent (soap) and water.
Cleaning is an important first step in the cleaning and disinfection process because it does not kill germs but does reduce the amount on surfaces.
It is important to clean from cleanest to dirtiest to reduce potential spread of germs from one surface to another. It is also important to use of a disinfectant following cleaning to reduce the risk of cross contamination on surfaces.
Sanitizing is meant to reduce the load of pathogens on a surface and refers to killing bacteria (99.9% vs disinfecting which is up to 99.9999%) but does not provide kill claims for viruses and fungi. Sanitizing is better than cleaning alone, however will not render a surface germ free.
Disinfecting a surface means you are killing up to 99.9999% of germs on surfaces or objects. This includes bacteria (like MRSA, VRE, Strep, Staph), Viruses (like rhinovirus, poliovirus, coronaviruses, influenza, RSV, Norovirus), and fungi (like Trichophyton (athletes foot) and Candida).
It is important to always read your disinfectant label and follow the instructions for pre-cleaning (if required) and contact time. Contact time ranges from 30 seconds to 10 minutes.
What is the difference between a level 1, level 2, and level 3 medical mask?
ASTM International is an international standards organization that develops and publishes technical standards for a wide range of materials, products, systems, and services includings Masks.
ASTM Standards for Masks are:
Level 1 Masks are for low risk of fluid exposure and recommended for short exposure
Level 2 Masks are for medium risk of fluid exposure
Level 3 Masks are for high risk of fluid exposure
Note: Not all masks will have an ASTM rating on their packaging so it is important to ask or verify which level. Cloth masks and non-medical masks are not considered PPE - however, have been recommend to assist in source control (i.e., to. protect others in close proximity to the wearer).
Remember that even the best or highest rated mask if worn incorrectly can put you at risk. The mask must fit securely around your face and create a seal (no gaps). Gaps will increase the risk of inhalation exsposure.
Cloth or non-medical masks are face coverings worn for source control and are not PPE.
N95 Masks are meant for complete protection and recommended when aerosol transmittable diseases (TB or Sars-CoV-2) are suspected
Will a face shield protect me from Sars-CoV-2?
According to a study by Ontario Public Health,
"Face shields feature a looser fit and transparency, which may be why their use in place of non-medical masks has been considered only in certain circumstances (e.g., when masks are in shortage, when wearing masks interferes with speech clarity, for those impacted by heat stress).
At this time there is some experimental evidence to support that face shields may block aerosolized droplets, which supports its current use as PPE (
in addition to other equipment, including face masks). To date, there is
no evidence that face shields alone are effective either as source control or as PPE."
Masks are recommended as the PPE of choice to help slow the spread and reduce the risk of transmission from person to person.
What is advantage of disinfectant wipes over other formats?
Ready to use disinfectant wipes with short contact times are ideal during the pandemic to help keep high touch surfaces and high traffic areas clean and disinfected.
The easy to use and convenient format allows for more people to participate in the cleaning and disinfection process which means you are getting more frequent disinfection and reducing the risk of germs on surfaces significantly.