Does killing 99.9% of bacteria prove a disinfectant is effective?
There have been many disinfectants recently advertised, on television and in the media, claiming they will kill 99.9% of bacteria. Although this sounds extremely efficient, it does not prove that a product is an effective disinfectant.
In order to demonstrate effectiveness, disinfectants should be tested using European Standard Test Methods. These methods specify a 99.999% reduction in bacteria to pass the test.
What does killing 99.9% and 99.999% of bacteria mean?
Bacteria are microscopic free living single celled organisms, a surface contaminated with raw meat for example could have millions of bacteria per square centimetre.
For example a surface with 1,000,000 bacteria treated with a product that kills 99.9% of bacteria would still have 1000 bacteria remaining. If the surface was treated with a product that kills 99.999% of bacteria only 10 would remain.
What does 5 log reduction mean?
5 log reduction is equivalent to 99.999% reduction and is the term used in European Standard Test Methods.
3 log reduction is equivalent to 99.9% reduction.
How quickly do bacteria multiply?
Bacterial growth rates vary depending on the surface, type and degree of soiling, temperature and presence of water. E.coli (under ideal conditions) multiplies in 15 minutes. If conditions are less than ideal e.g. lowering the temperature, or drying the surface, the growth rate slows down.
For example 1,000 bacteria would increase to 2,000 after 15 minutes, after 30 minutes it would be 4,000 and after one hour 16,000 and 256,000 after 2 hours, 10 bacteria would only have multiplied to 256 in the same 2 hours.
Why is it important to reduce bacteria numbers to as low a number as possible?
The presence of bacteria does not automatically lead to infection, the vulnerability of the person and the infectious dose (number of bacteria required to cause an infection) are vitally important. Susceptible individuals such as the very young, elderly and sick are more at risk from an opportunistic infection. Some bacteria will cause an infection with less then 100 cells ingested or introduced into cuts or wounds. For this reason it is important to reduce numbers of harmful bacteria to the lowest number possible whenever the risk of infection is high.
What criteria do Cromessol Hygiene products meet?
Our disinfectants reduce bacteria numbers by 99.999% (5 log). They are tested using European Standards.
Our Products Pass EN14476 Against Swine Flu
UltraZone Hand – alcohol hand rub,
UltraZone Surface – virucidal disinfectant cleaner
Animal Healthcare Disinfectant
Have all been tested (EN14476) and passed against PORCINE INFLUENZA A VIRUS H1N1 – commonly known as Swine Flu.
We feel these microbiological results are extremely significant by providing evidence of efficacy against the swine flu virus especially when extra hygiene precautions should be taken at this time of the year.
There is an abundance of good advice and general information by the National Health Service (www.nhs.uk) and the World Health Organisation (www.who.int) explaining how to recognise swine flu and how to help protect yourself.
The simple message is to continue with good hygiene practice by washing hands on a regular basis, and continue cleaning and disinfecting hard surfaces paying special attention to "touch" surfaces such as door handles, telephones, tables, work tops and toilets.
ULTRAZONE HAND – Alcohol hand rub with moisturiser.
- Ultrazone Hand passes EN14476 against Porcine Influenza Type A undiluted under clean and dirty conditions with a 30 second contact time.
- Kills bacteria and viruses. Please refer to microbiology profile.
- Contains a minimum 70% alcohol
- Ideal in catering and medical care establishments.
ULTRAZONE SURFACE – Virucidal disinfectant cleaner
- UltraZone Surface passes EN14476 at 1:200 under clean conditions and 1:100 under dirty conditions with a 5 minute contact time
- Kills a range of pathogenic micro organisms including MRSA, HIV, Hepatitis B.
- Removes general soiling from washable surfaces
- Ideal in healthcare establishments
ANIMAL HEALTHCARE DISINFECTANT
- Animal Healthcare passes EN14675:2006 at 1:1000 low level soiling, 1:400 high level soiling 30 minutes 10°C.
- Ministry approved patented glutaraldehyde formulation
- Highly effective against bacteria, viruses and fungi
- Ideal for use in the poultry and livestock industry
Protect Yourself Against Bacteria and Germs
There is not a great deal we can add to the abundance of information being issued by the Health Protection Agency and the World Health Organisation, except to continue with good hygiene standards and ensure hands are washed on a regular basis, as described below.
What measures can I take to prevent infection?
General infection control practices, good respiratory and hand hygiene can help to reduce transmission of all viruses, including the human swine influenza. This includes:
- Covering your nose and mouth when coughing and sneezing, using a tissue when possible.
- Disposing of dirty tissues promptly and carefully.
- Maintaining good basic hygiene, for example washing hands frequently with Trigon followed by hand disinfection with UltraZone Hand, to reduce the spread of the virus from your hands to your face or to other people.
- It has been reported that the virus will survive on hard surfaces for up to 24 hours and therefore frequent cleaning of hard surfaces (e.g. worktops & door handles) using a product such as UltraZone Surface (dilute 1:5).
- Ensure children follow this advice especially on washing hands.