Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Your Phone Might Be Clean but Has It Been Disinfected?

Don’t know the difference? Don’t worry. You are not alone. According to Miriam Webster, the word clean means “free from dirt or pollution.” When you look at an item to measure its cleanliness that’s probably what you look for as well. Disinfection is a different animal entirely. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), disinfection is "a process that eliminates many or all pathogenic microorganisms, except bacterial spores, on inanimate objects."

When it comes to preventing the spread of disease, it’s not enough for your phone to be wiped clean of ketchup that spilled from the burger you ate, while simultaneously looking through Snapchat stories. It’s not ketchup and grease that’s particularly dangerous, it’s germs. And the fact of the matter is that just because your phone looks the same as it did when you bought it, doesn’t mean that it is safe to use.

A study by the University of Arizona determined that cell phones carry ten times more bacteria than toilet seats. Just imagine how gross you would feel if you were holding up a toilet seat to your face for several minutes at a time. Now imagine a toilet seat that’s ten times dirtier than the average toilet seat. Imagine a toilet seat at the grimiest gas station in town that hasn’t been cleaned in quite some time. If you’re anything like me you wouldn’t even think about sitting on it, even with putting toilet paper on the seat. You would either go to the Walgreens across the street or wait until you get home. Imagine putting that on your face every single day.

Sound like I’m exaggerating to make a point? I wish I was. According to the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, 1 in 6 smartphones contain fecal matter. That means that for every six people that you type your number into their phone, you are quite likely touching some form of fecal matter. All of a sudden, you might want to keep your phone away from the dinner table, right?

The problem gets even worse. Unfortunately, Apple and Samsung products can’t withstand the use of cleaning products to disinfect the devices. Yes, that is correct. Seemingly, the only effective way to truly keep your phone safe to use is also going to ruin your pricy device. Fortunately, there is another option.

Seal Screen is a brand-new type of custom screen protector that was specifically designed to withstand cleaning products as well as protect the screens from impact. It’s a state-of-the-art product that was specifically made for the medical industry but can be used by anyone who wants to properly disinfect their phone. Simply put, this is the best solution for the grossest problem in your life today.

New Category of Screen Protection Aims to Help Prevent Infections

There is a major issue in healthcare that isn’t getting proper coverage. Almost a hundred thousand people are dying in the US per year as a result of healthcare-acquired infections (HAIs.) In comparison, diabetes led to roughly 80,000 deaths in 2017. Yet diabetes is constantly on people’s minds and garners a lot of media attention, while HAIs are treated like an afterthought, despite causing more mortalities. According to The Centers for Disease Control (CDC), 80% of infections are transmitted by hands. But what hasn’t been accounted for is the enormous quantity of screens that are now serving as an extension of people’s hands, but not getting cleaned nearly as often, if ever. According to Dr. Charles Gerba a microbiology professor at the University of Arizona, "Mobile phones are now mobile germ devices."

Interestingly enough, this problem is not restricted to hospitals. Touch screen displays have become part of the restaurant experience with many top chains such as McDonald’s, Olive Garden and Panera Bread implementing them as a way to lessen labor costs. This side of the equation has no doubt been a success. But like in the healthcare industry, there were some unexpected effects of this shift. One might expect certain kinds of bacteria to be present in a hospital setting, but the last place they would expect to see fecal bacteria is on their burger.

According to Dr. Paul Matewele, a senior lecturer in microbiology at London Metropolitan University “We were all surprised how much gut and fecal bacteria there was on the touchscreen machines. These cause the kind of infections that people pick up in hospitals. For instance, Enterococcus faecalis is part of the flora of gastrointestinal tracts of healthy humans and other mammals. It is notorious in hospitals for causing hospital-acquired infections.”

The main roadblock to this is that when these commonly used and expensive screens are disinfected with the proper cleaning agents, the screens themselves deteriorate. One may believe that because Apple, Samsung and Google recommend that most cleaning agents not be used on their devices, that the devices are safe to be used without adequate disinfection. This is a dangerous fallacy.

When buying a screen protector, it’s important to look for the following qualities: It must protect the screen from impact and be scratch-resistant. It must allow it to withstand harsh cleaning products that properly disinfect the device. It must also contain anti-microbial product protection.

Seal Shield, a leader in Infection Solutions, is launching a brand-new category of custom screen protectors that addresses each of these concerns and allows for a disinfection routine such as cleaning with bleach, isopropyl alcohol or other common commercial cleaners, which can help prevent infections. It’s called Seal Screen and it’s a truly trailblazing product with both business and consumer application. They custom make each one to fit any size screen. There is no reason why a germ-carrying device that follows people everywhere or is touched by masses shouldn’t be able to be properly disinfected.

Thursday, November 21, 2019

Your Mouse Can Negate Your Hand Hygiene Efforts

That’s your computer mouse I’m talking about. Your PC mouse. If you’re not careful, they can be just as dirty as a regular mouse. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that 80% of infections are spread by hands. But if you are touching your keyboard and mouse with your unwashed hands and then wash your hands, only to go back to using your dirty keyboard and mouse, then what was the point of even washing your hands? You just negated your efforts to maintain good hand hygiene and are right back to square one.

This is especially true in workstations that are shared by multiple people. You might have a good amount of faith in your own hand hygiene, but statistically speaking you should assume that most of the people you work with do not. According to studies performed by Bradley Corporation, 70% of people admit to not washing their hands with soap. That means that if multiple people use the same computer, it’s almost certain that there will be some gross bacteria to come in contact with.

Two weeks ago, I identified some of the most useful keyboards in the Seal Shield catalogue, all of which are washable and come with Seal Shield’s state-of-the-art antimicrobial product protection. It is essential however to treat hand hygiene as an all-encompassing routine as opposed to just little things you do here and there. You are touching your mouse just as often as your keyboard and are still prone to getting sick if you aren’t washing both.

If you are sharing a workstation with someone who hasn’t washed their hands, they are going to be rubbing the same contaminants on the mouse that they are on your keyboard. One might even compare typing on your computer for several hours right after someone has used it with their dirty hands to shaking that person’s unwashed hands for several hours. Moral of the story: make sure you buy yourself a washable keyboard and a washable computer mouse. It’s the only way to truly stay clean.

Some of Seal Shield’s most popular mice include:

Silver Surf Waterproof Mouse

Silver Storm Wireless Waterproof Mouse

Monday, November 18, 2019

New Device Marks Huge Breakthrough in UV-C Light Disinfection

The new ElectroClave is finally here. And it’s setting the tone in many different ways. One of the most important advancements that this new product is bringing is its one-of-a-kind UV-C Light Disinfection technology. It brings to the table a true 360-degree disinfection process.

How? It utilizes filtration media to prevent dust and particulates from entering the bays in order to maximize efficacy by eliminating shadowing. Additionally, its disinfection bays are constructed of quartz to ensure the shelf the mobile device is placed on isn’t shielding any of the UV-C light. So if you insert your phone into the device for a disinfection cycle, there won’t be a spot that remains unaffected by the disinfection process.

Speaking of which, the disinfection process is also something to marvel at. It has customizable cycles based on workflow and efficacy needs ranging from as fast as one minute to the more comprehensive six-log kill rate in six minutes. That’s 99.9999% efficacy. This means you are far more likely to be struck and killed by lightning in your lifetime than a microorganism is to survive six minutes in this device. A microorganism on your phone when you use this cleaning device is like a single guy with a pocketknife going up against the entire US Army.

This may raise some concerns about your phone. “What will become of my phone when I put it in this death machine,” you may be thinking. Turns out that if you’re not an E. coli bacteria, you don’t have to worry. Seal Shield’s UV-C disinfection technology doesn’t generate heat or degrade materials. They conducted 3rd party analysis with Vocera™ to show that after 1 year of continuous exposure under the LEDs, their Vocera Badges had no material degradation. Competitors with far less effective disinfection technology tend to also damage people’s mobile devices, on top of not disinfecting them properly.

Now you might be thinking: Why does that matter? How does this affect me? If you are a healthcare professional, this actually does matter to you. A lot. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that 1.7 million people a year are developing healthcare-acquired infections, leading to almost 100,000 annual deaths. Healthcare workers’ failure to wash hands is considered to be a main cause, but it’s a bit more complicated than that. The CDC estimates that 80% of infections are transmitted by hands. But what happens if you touch your unsanitized phone a second after washing your hands? Or worse, what happens if you had previously been interacting with contagious patients?

This is where Seal Shield’s mantra “Prevent Infections. Save Lives,” comes into play. This is why the ElectroClave was invented. There is no more effective way to make sure your mobile devices aren’t getting in the way of your hand-hygiene protocol. It’s imperative that all the hard work nurses do to protect patients from infections isn’t being negated by these devices that have become essential to healthcare.

To learn more about how the ElectroClave can help your organization visit: http://electroclave.sealshield.com/

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Latest Tech Aims to Reduce Healthcare-Acquired Infections by Disinfecting Mobile Devices

The rise of mobile devices has been prevalent in every industry. It’s changed the way we bank, educate and shop for the better. But it’s not all been good- and I’m not just talking about the fact that your boss can now reach you any time of the day or night. Healthcare is one of the industries that are most thoroughly affected by emerging tech. If you’ve ever been treated with antibiotics, as opposed to having a leech suck out your blood for since-debunked therapeutic purposes (yes, that was a widely accepted form of medicine once upon a time), you should be grateful.

However, the rise of mobile devices in healthcare, which was intended to save valuable resources and get people faster and more efficient treatment, had an unexpected side effect, as is not uncommon in medicine. The phones are essentially bacteria-magnets and aren’t being treated as such. Ask yourself how much emphasis is constantly placed on washing your hands. It’s not a misguided effort. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Prevention estimates that 80% of infections are transmitted by hands. But what happens if you touch your unsanitized phone a second after washing your hands? Or even worse, what happens if you had previously been interacting with people who have contagious illnesses? Do you see how that can be a problem?

So does the CDC. They estimate that 1.7 million people a year are developing healthcare-acquired infections, leading to almost 100,000 annual deaths. Healthcare workers’ failure to wash hands is considered to be a main cause. But what are they supposed to do about their phones? Apple and Samsung products are quite handy, but one thing they are not is resistant to cleaning products. They advertise as such on their respective websites. As a result, devices had to be created to clean our devices.

It’s quite possible that you’ve heard of these types of cleaning devices such as Phone Soap that were built for the individual consumers. But the only solution that’s suitable for healthcare’s needs is the ElectroClave. It uses UV light disinfection to wipe out 99.9999% of germs on your mobile devices. The ElectroClave is to these amateur machines what a NASCAR race car is to a Honda Civic. One is a consumer product (though not quite as reliable as a Civic) and the other is for actual professionals. In the case of the ElectroClave, it is a state-of-the-art device built for medical professionals who do not have any room for error, not just for germophobes who also like to use their phone at the toilet.

It’s an all-inclusive solution that offers an explanation to any concern you might have.
  • Worried about someone going in and stealing your phone? The ElectroClave comes with 4-digit PIN access and can even upgrade to non-touch employee badge access.
  • Worried about buying this device and then letting it sit there unused like the StairMaster you bought last Christmas? The ElectroClave can send text reminders when your phone needs disinfecting.
  • IT department giving you a hard time about potential issues with system integration? Tell them the ElectroClave has the ability to integrate to existing systems to include RTLS, EMR/EHR and MDM.
Mobile devices are a 21st century Pandora’s box. There are many complicated problems that have arisen in healthcare as a result, despite all the excellent benefits. Fortunately, the ElectroClave UV disinfection box offers comprehensive solutions to each of these problems. It tackles each problem one by one and in the end, it actually saves time for everyone involved.

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

5 Cool Keyboards with Unexpected Functions

1. Cleanwipe Wireless Waterproof Keyboard

Medical-Grade Keyboard

This is the keyboard the keyboard manufacturers use. It’s used in hospitals due to its anti-microbial product protection. Its a dishwasher safe keyboard, which doesn’t sound like a particularly necessary keyboard feature, but it’s actually the best way to clean your keyboard. It’s highly recommended for use with computers that are shared by multiple people and it’s a hit with germophobes everywhere.

2. Seal Glow Silicone Keyboard Backlit Magnetic Backing

The Space Keyboard

This is the keyboard is cool enough to take to outer space. Heck, this is the type of keyboard you would probably find on the Millennium Falcon. Its magnetic backing means that no matter how turbulent your work station gets when you’re cruising at warp speed, your keyboard can remain securely fastened to your metal desk.

3. Silver Seal Waterproof Keyboard Tap & Go

The Top-Secret Keyboard

This is the ultimate high-security keyboard. If you work for the government, handle sensitive medical records or really don’t want your girlfriend looking at your search history, this is the keyboard for you. This cool keyboard is actually sold to the FBI and CIA. You place a badge on the keyboard to sign onto the computer. Nuclear codes not included.

4. Silver Storm Washable Keyboard - STK503RED

The Red One

This keyboard is useful beyond the Georgia Bulldog fanbase. Its red color makes it an excellent differentiator for nurses’ downtime stations or to identify a clean terminal. Even a Florida Gator can find good use out of this keyboard.

5. Silver Seal Glow Waterproof Keyboard

For Migraines

This waterproof keyboard comes with all of Seal Shield’s standard anti-microbial product protection, yet it also serves another medical function. This keyboard is cool for migraine patients, who can be sensitive to bright light during a migraine headache. This backlit keyboard allows users to operate their device with the lights off and with lower screen brightness, while still being able to see the keyboard. This keyboard puts your computer on “migraine mode,” and makes for a more pleasant experience.

Here are the five keyboards from this article on the main Seal Shield website:

1. Cleanwipe™ Wireless Waterproof Keyboard - SSKSV099WV2
2. Seal Glow™ Silicone Keyboard Backlit Magnetic Backing - S106G2M
3. Silver Seal™ Waterproof Keyboard - SSKSV207RC13.56 (Tap & Go)
4. Silver Storm™ Washable Keyboard - STK503RED
5. Silver Seal™ Glow Waterproof Keyboard - SSWKSV207G

Friday, November 1, 2019

Breakthrough Software is Holding Medical Professionals Accountable for Disinfecting their Phones

You’ve spent tens of thousands of dollars installing state-of-the-art UV light disinfection stations in your clinical workspace. Now unlike the StairMaster you bought yourself last Christmas and haven’t used since January, you can’t afford to let these devices go unused- not with nearly a hundred thousand people dying each year from healthcare-acquired infections. The risk is just too high and stems beyond any one person.

The ElectroClave UV disinfection box was designed and built with exactly this in mind. The manufacturers, Seal Shield, know how many things are on a medical professional’s mind at the same time and that it can be tough to keep track of something that doesn’t feel like an immediate problem. That’s why they teamed up with people from some of the top hospitals in the world to develop software that makes sure that the disinfection stations are being used.

The software keeps track of when each user last disinfected their phone and can even send email and/or text alerts to remind users when a new disinfection cycle is needed. There is also a related mobile app that performs the same function by sending notifications. The software keeps all associated records and provides them to the hospital or organization. It makes keeping track of who’s disinfecting phones effectively an extremely simple process and is a huge time saver.

A huge positive factor of this accountability is the data that comes from it. When everyone in an organization is using the device as expected, the software is keeping hard evidence that they are going the extra mile to keep patients and employees safe. This compliance data serves excellently to show regulators what the hospital is doing. They don’t have to take anyone’s word for it.

There Are No Shortcuts to Effective Infection Prevention

But There Are Simple Solutions That Can Help

Infection prevention is like having a boat with holes in it. You can work your butt off trying to seal several of the holes before your boat sinks, but unless every single one is sealed you are going down. There are several ways that your metaphorical boat can sink without you even realizing.

Computers, while increasing the efficiency of healthcare exponentially, have also brought unforeseen challenges to infection prevention. It’s been demonstrated that the average keyboard is several thousand times dirtier than an average toilet seat. Now ask yourself, if you were a patient, how would you feel if you had a toilet seat at your bedside that the nurses were constantly entering data into.

A mouse is no different. Computer mice are capable of spreading disease just like real mice. Healthcare providers work so hard to ensure that their workstations and person are sanitary. Going back to the boat metaphor, the nurses are like sailors working day and night to get those holes sealed and often times mice and keyboards are the single hole that sinks everyone.

There is no way to cut corners here. And with tens of billions being spent by hospitals annually on healthcare-acquired infections, it’s clear that by spending a bit more on preventative action there could be a huge ROI down the line when patient’s hospitals stays are reduced. And the key thing to remember is that since hand-hygiene is so paramount to any organization, why not just take the extra step and make sure you’re covering all your bases? If you’re already committing to hand hygiene, why not make a full commitment?

In order to not negate the extensive efforts hospitals are making to promote hand-hygiene, it’s essential to make sure you are cleaning your mice and keyboards. How better to do it than to fully submerge it in cleaning solution? Or better yet, put it in a washing machine!

This image may seem a bit odd, but it’s actually the most logical way to clean your keyboard and mice. The only thing you have to do is make sure you are using waterproof computer mice and keyboards. Fortunately, Seal Shield manufactures washable medical mice and keyboards that also feature antimicrobial product protection. They were specifically designed with healthcare in mind- because that’s where lies the least margin of error for proper hand hygiene.

The devices are as easy to use as any other mouse or keyboard. They are built to not compromise usability for safety. You see, it is possible to have both. For those in healthcare, these devices were made for you. For those who aren’t in healthcare but are conscious of spreading germs, these devices offer you the possibility of having a workstation as clean as a nurse’s.