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10 Hygiene Habits to Keep Your Workplace Infection-Free

Infection Control 10 Hygiene Habits

Maintaining proper hygiene in the workplace is crucial for ensuring a healthy environment and preventing the spread of infections. With the ongoing concern over contagious diseases, it’s more important than ever to establish and maintain effective hygiene habits in the workplace.

Regular Cleaning Practices

Daily cleaning routines: Establish a daily cleaning schedule for high-touch areas such as doorknobs, light switches, and shared surfaces. Regular wiping down of these surfaces with disinfectant can significantly reduce the spread of germs.

Weekly cleaning tasks: In addition to daily cleaning, schedule weekly deep cleaning tasks such as vacuuming, mopping floors, and cleaning windows. This helps to eliminate accumulated dust and dirt, creating a cleaner and healthier workspace.

Personal Hygiene Practices

Handwashing techniques: Proper handwashing is one of the most effective ways to prevent the spread of infections. Encourage employees to wash their hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after using the restroom, before eating, and after coughing or sneezing.

Use of hand sanitizers: Provide hand sanitizers in common areas and encourage their use throughout the day, especially when soap and water are not readily available. Alcohol-based hand sanitizers with at least 60% alcohol content are effective in killing germs.

Proper Waste Management

Segregation of waste: Implement a waste segregation system to separate recyclable materials, organic waste, and general waste. Proper disposal of waste reduces the risk of contamination and promotes environmental sustainability.

Disposal procedures: Ensure that waste bins are emptied regularly and disposed of following appropriate guidelines. Hazardous waste, such as used tissues or medical supplies, should be handled and disposed of with care to prevent the spread of infection.

Sanitization of Common Areas

Desks and workstations: Encourage employees to clean their desks and workstations regularly with disinfectant wipes. Pay special attention to frequently touched surfaces such as keyboards, mice, and phone receivers.

Shared equipment and tools: Provide disinfectants for cleaning shared equipment such as printers, copiers, and office supplies. Employees should clean equipment before and after use to minimize the risk of transmission.

Encouraging Vaccination

Importance of vaccination: Promote the importance of vaccination in preventing the spread of infectious diseases such as flu and COVID-19. Encourage employees to get vaccinated and provide information on vaccination clinics and resources.

Encouraging employees to get vaccinated: Offer incentives or rewards for employees who receive vaccinations, such as extra paid time off or gift cards. Making vaccination easily accessible and incentivizing it can help increase vaccination rates among employees.

Promoting Respiratory Hygiene

Covering mouth when sneezing or coughing: Remind employees to cover their mouths with a tissue or their elbow when sneezing or coughing to prevent the spread of respiratory droplets. Provide tissues and disposal bins in common areas for proper disposal.

Use of tissues and disposal methods: Discourage the use of handkerchiefs and promote the use of disposable tissues. Used tissues should be disposed of immediately in designated waste bins to prevent contamination.

Provision of Hygiene Supplies

Availability of soap, hand sanitizers, and tissues: Ensure that soap, hand sanitizers, and tissues are readily available in restrooms, break rooms, and other common areas. Regularly check supplies and replenish as needed to maintain hygiene standards.

Placement of sanitization stations: Install hand sanitizing stations at key locations throughout the workplace, such as entrances, exits, and high-traffic areas. This encourages regular hand hygiene practices among employees and visitors.

Implementing Social Distancing

Arrangement of workspaces: Arrange workstations to allow for adequate social distancing between employees. Consider staggered work schedules or remote work options to reduce the number of people in the office at any given time.

Limiting gatherings and meetings: Encourage virtual meetings or outdoor gatherings whenever possible to minimize close contact between individuals. If in-person meetings are necessary, ensure that seating arrangements allow for social distancing.

Regular Inspection and Maintenance

Inspecting for cleanliness: Conduct regular inspections of the workplace to ensure that cleaning and hygiene standards are being met. Address any issues or deficiencies promptly to maintain a clean and safe environment.

Fixing any issues promptly: If maintenance issues are identified during inspections, such as leaks or malfunctioning equipment, prioritize repairs to prevent further contamination or safety hazards.

Educating Employees

Training sessions on hygiene practices: Provide training sessions or informational materials on proper hygiene practices for all employees. This includes handwashing techniques, respiratory etiquette, and cleaning procedures.

Regular reminders and updates: Keep hygiene practices top of mind by sending regular reminders and updates via email, posters, or staff meetings. Reinforce the importance of these habits in maintaining a healthy workplace.

Managing Food and Beverages

Proper storage and handling of food: Establish guidelines for the storage and handling of food in the workplace kitchen or break room. Ensure that perishable items are stored at the correct temperature and that shared utensils are cleaned properly.

Cleaning kitchen areas: Regularly clean and sanitize kitchen areas, including countertops, sinks, and appliances. Encourage employees to clean up after themselves and dispose of food waste properly to prevent pest infestations and bacterial growth.

Dealing with Sick Employees

Policy for sick leave: Implement a clear policy for sick leave that encourages employees to stay home when they are ill. Provide options for remote work or flexible scheduling to accommodate employees who need to stay home.

Isolation measures for sick employees: If an employee becomes ill while at work, provide a designated isolation area where they can rest until they can leave the premises. Clean and disinfect any areas where the sick employee has been to reduce the risk of spreading illness to others.

Monitoring and Feedback

Employee feedback mechanisms: Establish channels for employees to provide feedback on hygiene practices and suggest improvements. Regularly review feedback and make adjustments as needed to maintain a safe and healthy workplace.

Continuous improvement in hygiene practices: Strive for continuous improvement in hygiene practices by staying informed about best practices and emerging trends. Adapt policies and procedures as necessary to ensure the highest standards of cleanliness and safety.

Maintaining hygiene in the workplace is essential for the health and well-being of employees and visitors alike. By following these 10 hygiene habits, you can create a clean and infection-free environment that promotes productivity and reduces the risk of illness.


1. How often should high-touch surfaces be cleaned in the workplace?
High-touch surfaces should be cleaned and disinfected at least once daily, with more frequent cleaning recommended for areas with heavy traffic.

2. What are the benefits of promoting vaccination in the workplace?
Promoting vaccination helps to protect employees from infectious diseases, reduces absenteeism due to illness, and contributes to a safer work environment overall.

3. How can I encourage employees to practice good hygiene habits?
Lead by example, provide education and resources on hygiene practices, and offer incentives or rewards for compliance with hygiene guidelines.

4. What should I do if an employee comes to work sick?
Encourage the employee to go home and rest, provide support for remote work if possible, and ensure that any areas they have been in are thoroughly cleaned and disinfected.

5. How can I ensure that hygiene standards are being maintained in the workplace?
Regular inspections, employee feedback mechanisms, and ongoing education and training are key to ensuring that hygiene standards are upheld.