What is occupational sanitation?

Occupational sanitation is the development and application of sanitary measures in the workplace for the sake of cleanliness and protecting the safety and health of employees.

What are the effects of insufficient sanitation in the workplace?

1. Bacteria infection which can be ingested via non-potable water, contaminated food, contaminated air, or via direct contact to the eyes and mouth. Bacteria can lead to tuberculosis, pneumonia, typhoid, cholera and others
2. Viral infections which can invade cells and cause diseases such as polio, hepatitis A, HIV/AIDS, influenza and rotavirus
3. Parasitic protozoa which can cause malaria, amoebic dysentery and sleeping sickness
4. Parasitic worms which can attack human systems and cause undetectable, long term debilitating illnesses. Examples of parasitic worms include tapeworms, flukes, roundworms, hookworms, whipworms and more
5. Ingestion of hazardous chemicals via contaminated food, water, eating areas, etc.

What controls may be used to protect yourself and others from sanitation hazards and disease?

1. Do not consume water unless you are certain it is potable
2. Ensure all water and food vessels are clean
3. Keep food isolated from possible contamination sources at all times
4. Wash hands with disinfectant soap before and after preparing, cooking, serving or consuming food
5. Wash hands after using the latrine or toilet and after disposing of human or animal bio matter
6. Wash hands after they are exposed to any possible disease sources or chemicals
7. Shower, conduct personal hygiene and change into clean clothes at least daily or before each shift
8. Report any sanitation hazards to your supervisor or the next person in your chain of command as soon as you become aware of it
9. Avoid contact with others and seek medical attention if you suspect or know you have a condition that is contagious

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