What is public health? Wanna find out? Students in the USF Intro to Public Health class have chosen strategic areas in the Tampa Bay community that they feel represent public health in action. This blog is dedicated to explaining, understanding, and discussing what their interpretations of exactly what the heck is.... public health?!



Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Fight the Germs with Sanitizing Wipes!


We chose to place our public health sticker on shopping cart disinfect wipes in shopping centers. This location seemed fit for the project because hundreds of people are touching the shopping carts daily and this can be a health hazard not only because germs are being spread from hand to hand but also because the germs are around all of the food in the store. This represents a public health issue because direct contact is an easy way for germs to be spread. Researchers say that shopping cart handles are one of the dirtiest surfaces in the public health world, and cleaning them can only be beneficial. Germs being spread is an important issue because if one person goes into the store infected with something it can spread quickly due to all the contact with the shopping carts. In comparison to using hand sanitizer rather than sanitizing wipes, you can wash your hands and the handle on the cart so it is more likely for the germs to be killed with a wipe. The H1N1 virus was when the sanitizing wipes became present in the shopping centers and the wipes were used not only as a precaution of spreading the germs, but from killing them as well. Although there is still a 99.9% probability that the germs will all be killed with the sanitizing wipes, there is a still a small chance that germs can be passed on. With this being said it is important to take notice to the primary prevention measures and continue to wash your hands and the shopping cart handles.


By: Taylor Philipson, Eric Eshelman, and Brittany Dickinson

12 comments:

  1. I think this is a very importan public health issue and goes along with washing your hand after the bathroom, before eating, etc. I don't think many people realize how many germs and bacteria can be on shopping carts and other public use objects. Everytime my mother and I would go to the grocery we always made sure to use those free wipes offered because you never know who used the cart last. Not only does this help the consumer, but also the grocery as it shows that they have an interest in consumer health.

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  2. This is a great public health topic. Sometimes it scares me to touch a shopping cart handle because I don't know who previously used it and where their hands have been. I sometimes see people eating with their hands while shopping and I always wonder if they know that it's not sanitary or if they wiped everything down. It would be great if most store would keep sanitizing wipes around to wipe the handles down with so we can be safe. You don't have to be a germ freak to do this, just take precautions.

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  3. I think this is a huge public health issue. Sanitation is a huge primary prevention measure people need to take into account. If you dont wash your hands before you touch the shopping cart, think of all the places that peoples hands were before. This can spread the flu, like the big outbreak of H1N1, that was an epidemic a few years ago.

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  4. I am truly glad that you all have drawn our attention to the sanitizers found in the local grocery store. I think that the newly established public health issue has to be one of the most under promoted “prevention” matter, simply because I feel that the employee and employers should also try to encourage customer to make sure they make use of the sanitizing napkins that they have in their stores. I think that you guys did a wonderful job in picking this location because it is a part of our everyday lives. Hopefully all of our classmates would take this public health matter into consideration that even something as simple as this makes a big difference in our world; remembering to wipe the handles of the bars on your shopping cart can play a significant role in one’s life to prevent them from getting sick in the long run. Overall I think you all did a great job on this assignment, keep up the good work!

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  5. This is a great issue of public health. It is simple and effective at preventing the spread of viruses and bacteria that could potentially cause infection or disease. Hand to hand transmission of pathogens is one of the easiest and most effective way to spread infectious disease. A secondary prevention method like these sanitation wipes kills 99.9% of germs on shopping carts if used properly. Granted, there are still bacteria crawling on every surface of the store, but at least the cart that you spend the most time touching can be sanitized. It's not likely or possible to protect people from every single pathogen out there, but this is definitely a good tool we have already.

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