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What constitutes a "good" hand washing?

A thorough hand washing consists of the following steps which should last approximately 1-2 full minutes:

  1. Wet both hands and forearms with warm water.

  2.  Apply a generous amount of disinfecting soap in the palm of one hand; chlorhexidine scrub and povidone-iodine scrub are excellent examples.

  3.  Scrub each side of the hand, between the fingers and at least halfway up the arm using a vigorous motion. Be sure to wash under any rings.

  4. Use a hard plastic pick or stiff brush to remove debris under the fingernails while the soap is still on the hands.

  5.  Rinse both hands thoroughly with warm or tepid water.

  6.  Dry both hands and arms with a towel or air dryer because moisture will attract more microorganisms from the air.

Click here for a link to the CDC's web site with more information on hand washing.

Did You Know...?

Hand sanitizers are useful but they have limitations and are NOT an acceptable substitute for hand washing in some situations.

Click here to read more about hand sanitizers.