Rapid measurement technology can reduce hand-contamination by providing feedback on cleaning protocols.
Cleaner surfaces. Cleaner hands. Safer food.
Setting standards, monitoring and reporting hand cleanliness factors is critical for one very simple reason: What gets measured gets done.
Two Safe Level standards include the quality of the handwash and the frequency. These are covered under ProGrade and the ServeReady™ Hand.
A third measurement in this information-starved area, is a group of readings taken of designated high-risk high-transfer surfaces. This system is dubbed TouchReady™ and starts with surface assessment called The Dirty Dozen.
The TouchReady™ System, following a basic HACCP approach, is used to help set standards, train staff and document surface cleanliness in foodservice. Handwashing For Life recommends key surfaces be checked more frequently thanks to this convenient surface-prioritized rapid-read system using ATP technology.
Fecal contaminated surface to hand - to new surface - to new hand is a critical sequence to consider when prioritizing surfaces for closer monitoring. Here is a link to an important reference study to answer the question about germ transfer from hard surfaces to clean hands. Quantification and Variability Analysis of Bacterial Cross-Contamination Rates in Common Food Service Tasks.
ATP offers an additional advantage in evaluating cleaning methods and in establishing task frequencies.
Easy and rapid read-out results also provide a valuable, high impact feedback when training the food worker. Corrective actions can be taken immediately. The readings allow food workers to see the importance of surface cleaning procedures, the ease with which soil is transfered and the need for frequent handwashing. They can experience and internalize the reality of cross-contamination.
This technology is also useful to optimize glove changing and to demonstrate to the food handler why gloves must be changed frequently.
Best Practice. Build ATP testing into your periodic Quality Assurance protocols. Use this data to help bring hand hygiene into the realm of HACCP.
Assessment of ATP Monitoring in Foodservice.
What is ATP bioluminescence and where does it fit in restaurants? These abstracts will provide the technical background to assist in determing where and how to take advantage of this valuable technology in your food safety protocols: (Under review.)
This presentation was given by Dr. Paul Allwood at the 2007 meeting of NEHA in Atlantic City, New Jersey.
Monitoring Hand-Contamination in Real Time Checklist:
- Select supplier with established food industry credibility.
- Programmable Pass/Fail thresholds are a must.
- Hardware/Reagent system requires accuracy, speed and ease of use.
- A four week shelf life is important for foodservice applications.
- Select supplier that offers easy access to technical service.
- Visit TouchReady™ Surface Cleanliness System for added insights.