Infection Control Week

Picture of soapy hands washing

Infection Control Week

The third week in October is National Infection Control Week in Canada. This week is used to raise awareness to infection prevention and control (IPAC) issues. It may seem simple, but cleaning your hands properly is one of the best ways to stay healthy and prevent the spread of germs.

There are two ways that you can clean your hands:

  1. Using an alcohol based hand rub

-works by killing germs on your hands

-minimum 70% alcohol concentration preferred

-not to be used with water

-most contain ingredients to reduce hand irritation

-if hands are visibly dirty is not effective

-use enough so that your hands are in contact with the product for a minimum of 15 seconds before they dry


  1. Washing with soap and water

-works by physically removing germs on your hands

-antimicrobial soap is not recommended (a few health care related exceptions)

-wet hand first, lather hands with soap for a minimum of 15 seconds, rinse hands well then dry your hands gently (if using paper towels, use them to turn off the taps)

Remember to clean your hands before preparing, handling, or eating food; and after all personal body functions (ex. After using the toilet, blowing your nose). Avoid touching your mouth, eyes or nose without clean hands as well. There are additional moments for those who work in health care to clean their hands. These are called the 4 moments of hand hygiene and can be found here.



If you have any infection prevention and control questions please contact the CKPHU at 519-352-7270 ext. 5902.