Now that December is here, we’ve reached peak flu season. This period, which lasts from December through February, is the time of year when schools get hit hardest by outbreaks of influenza. To keep staff and students healthy throughout the winter months, you’ll want to work closely with your school cleaning service.
The right school cleaning service can make a significant difference during flu season, reducing the risk of indirect viral transfer via high-touch surfaces. When coupled with effective health/hygiene education among students, this can dramatically reduce the rate of flu outbreaks in your school.
How Your School Cleaning Service Can Reduce Flu Outbreaks
During flu season, influenza spreads in two distinct ways. The first and most common vehicle for spreading infection is airborne matter. When an infected person breathes, coughs, or sneezes, tiny bits of their saliva become airborne. Other people breathe in these contaminated particles, resulting in infection.
To reduce the risk of airborne infection, schools are encouraged to teach proper health and hygiene to students and faculty. Students and teachers should be encouraged to stay home if sick and to cover their mouths when coughing or sneezing.
The second route for infection is surface transfer. An infected person gets saliva or mucus on their hands, then touches an item, contaminating its surface. When another person touches this surface, the virus transfers to their hands. That person then becomes infected by touching their mouth, nose, or eyes.
This is an area where the quality of your school cleaning service makes a big difference during peak flu season. High-touch surfaces like faucets, door handles, desktops, and computer keyboards can become viral hotspots at this time of year. When one of these surfaces becomes contaminated, the flu virus gets a free ride to infect other students and faculty members.
Your school cleaning service can stop flu outbreaks by cleaning and disinfecting surfaces more often during the winter months. By doing so, you can reduce the number of students and faculty members that come into contact with the flu virus. Combined with effective health and hygiene education, this can shield your school from the worst that flu season has to offer.
What to Expect from Your School Cleaning Service
While your school cleaning service can make a significant difference during peak flu season, this is only the case if they are using the right cleaning methods, products, and equipment.
If your cleaning service or custodial staff don’t know how to properly clean and disinfect high-touch areas, you’re out of luck. The flu virus will enjoy what amounts to a permanent hall pass, going wherever it pleases and infecting staff and students indiscriminately.
To protect your school against influenza during peak flu season, you’ll need a cleaning service that meets all of the following standards:
- Risk Identification. A qualified school cleaning service will be able to identify which areas and items are at greatest risk for attracting and spreading the flu virus.
- Disinfection Frequency. Your cleaners should be familiar with how frequently high-risk surfaces require cleaning and disinfection during peak flu season.
- Proper Disinfectants. Some disinfectants are only effective for a narrow spectrum of viruses. It’s important that your cleaning staff use products that have been tested for multiple strains of influenza.
- Application Methods. Disinfectants can’t eliminate germs they can’t reach, so it’s important that cleaners are educated and equipped to disinfect hard-to-reach spaces.
School cleaning services from JAN-PRO® offer a great example of how to approach both routine cleaning and surface disinfection during peak flu season. To become JAN-PRO Signature Clean® certified, our owner-operators receive detailed instruction on how to identify and disinfect high-touch areas, as well as how to use a wide range of commercial disinfectants.
We also equip our cleaners with EnviroShield®, a one-of-a-kind disinfection system that uses an eco-friendly disinfectant that is 100% non-toxic and kid-safe. The EnviroShield® applicator gives disinfectant particles an electrostatic charge, which causes these particles to wrap themselves around treated surfaces. This ensures total surface coverage, and it allows our cleaners to easily disinfect hard-to-reach areas.
EnviroShield® is so effective that it is commonly used in medical facilities as part of our MedMetrix® process. It’s also used in settings like offices, fitness centers, retail facilities, and day care centers.
Learn more about our school cleaning services and request a FREE consultation from your local JAN-PRO by calling 866-355-1064 today.