Manufacturer of CleanTech®, the world's only fully automated handwashing technology. We believe that in order to create a healthier and safer world, we must redefine human hygiene by eliminating the variability of human behavior in the hygiene process. Services include automated hygiene technology, hygiene program consultation, and uniquely formulated hygiene solutions.
Design, Manufacturing, Automated Hygiene Technology Manufacturing, Hygiene Program Consultation, Hygiene Technology Service & Maintenance
CleanTech® Automatic Handwashing Stations, Meritech Automated Boot Washing Stations, Meritech Hygiene Solutions
NSF Certified Technology, HACCP Certified Hygiene Experts
We have relied on manual handwashing for years, and we’ve never had a problem. Why should we change? What are the benefits of automating?
A good manual hand wash is effective in reducing hand bacteria counts, no doubt. However, the manual hand wash method cannot be guaranteed to be consistent from person to person and day-to-day, otherwise this would be a good alternative. Manual handwashing is inherently variable. Important aspects of the hand wash, such as amount of soap, amount of water, coverage of the hand (fingernails, fingertips, between the fingers, wrist, etc.), and duration of the wash vary from wash to wash. By automating the process, these aspects are closely controlled and each person receives a high-quality hand wash regardless of the human variability factor. If you haven't experienced any problems in the past, then statistically you are overdue for a problem. CleanTech® standardizes each hand wash, guarantees clean hands, and leaves skin feeling softer with each wash! And this innovative technology provides a more sustainable approach to hand hygiene as it uses 75% less water and produces 75% less waste than a traditional sink. Meritech has performed a series of independent laboratory studies that clinically prove CleanTech® automated handwashing systems remove more than 99.9% of harmful pathogens from hands with each 12-second wash cycle, providing an equivalent result as a full 1-minute manual hand wash.
What is the difference between resident and transient bacteria, and how does CleanTech® address each?
Resident flora are organisms that are always present on the skin of our hands and live in the layers of our skin. Resident flora are responsible for keeping our skin alive and healthy. In fact, they are even beneficial to good health. Resident flora are naturally occurring organisms and do not cause disease. Transient bacteria are viruses and spores that do cause illness, disease, and even death in extreme cases. They are not normal hand flora—they are picked up onto the hands from some contaminated surface (doorknobs, viscera, utensils, etc.). Then, the hands serve as a vector for disease, a transportation method for those pathogens to contaminate another surface, or another person. CleanTech® systems effectively remove more 99.9% of transient pathogens on hands in just 12 seconds.
We use gloves. Why does my company need CleanTech®?
Automated handwashing is highly recommended in facilities that use gloves due to the high risk of cross-contamination! To start, the use of gloves creates the perfect warm, moist environment perfectly suited for breeding colonies of pathogens on the hands. Furthermore, studies show that gloves are not as reliable of a barrier as we might hope they would be. In a study conducted by BioScience Laboratories that tested randomly selected vinyl food-grade gloves, 80% were found to have pre-existing punctures or tears. In the study, when hands were washed properly prior to gloving, no significant microbial growth was observed on the surface of the glove. In another study, hands that were initially inoculated with E. coli before donning gloves were determined to have significant counts on the outside surface of the gloves after use. This research supports the notion that, when hands are not properly washed prior to donning gloves, there is a risk of any pathogens on the hands inside the glove to cross-contaminate external surfaces. For those companies that do use gloves, the CDC recommends washing before gloving due to the rapid growth of bacteria on gloved hands, and due to the risk of punctures and tears during use. When hands are washed effectively prior to wearing gloves, the risk of cross-contamination is reduced, but the key is that the manual wash must be effective. Only a CleanTech® automated handwashing system can guarantee an effective hand wash prior to gloving every time.
I use instant hand sanitizers. Why do I need CleanTech®?
Hand sanitizers are an easy, quick alternative when handwashing with plain soap and water or with a CleanTech® automated handwashing system isn’t convenient or possible. Hand sanitizers often have a form of alcohol, such as ethyl alcohol, as an active ingredient and are used as an antiseptic. While convenient, research shows that alcohol gel is not an equivalent substitute for handwashing, and the CDC and FDA recommend that hand sanitizers only be used when a manual or automated hand wash option is not readily available. Instant hand sanitizers are not an acceptable method for handwashing in any food applications (production or food service). This is due to the fact that people rarely use the appropriate amount and contact time required for hand sanitizer to kill the volume of transient pathogens present on their hands. Furthermore, sanitizers are not healthy for the skin. Actually, many sanitizers damage the skin to the point that it makes it easier for many pathogens to colonize in the cracks of dried and dead skin. Most importantly, alcohol gel sanitizers are not effective in killing and/or removing many pathogens, and so the use of alcohol gel can actually promote the spread of disease by creating a false sense of security that results in less frequent and effective handwashing. A perfect example of a situation where gel sanitizers are a poor solution is in controlling norovirus on cruise ships. The CDC has clearly stated that alcohol gel does not kill or remove norovirus, and cruise lines are being required to encourage more regular handwashing among their guests or to provide CleanTech® automated handwashing stations. When instant hand sanitizers are used in any application, people are misled to believe that they are cleaning their hands; therefore they lessen their trips to a sink with soap and water. This false sense of security actually increases cross contamination and infection rates.
Which model is best for me?
Product fit can vary depending on your industry, hygiene needs, employee count, regulatory environment, and business processes. We have a wide range of handwashing and footwear sanitizing options designed for various business types and use cases. In just a few minutes, our team of employee hygiene experts can advise you on the appropriate system for your business. Give us a call at (800) 932-7707 to get started now.