• The Ultimate Guide to Beating Hospital-Acquired Infections

    Sep 21, 2017

    With the onset of antibacterial products and modern scientific advancements, it seems a safe assumption that we are winning the battle against infection. In actuality, the fight continues against new, more resistant disease-causing microorganisms.


    A primary area for concern in health care facilities is hospital acquired infections (HAI)—which rank among the top 10 most frequent causes of death in the United States. In response to the growing number of HAIs, as well as to the number of immune-deficient patients, health care organizations have an increased awareness and interest in cleanliness, sanitation, and disinfection techniques. Across the U.S., health care facilities are implementing programs that help maintain a cleaner, healthier environment that can stop HIAs before they occur.

    A significant part of any sanitation program is worker awareness—which starts with understanding the most common ways microorganisms move from one person to the next. One of the best ways to reduce cross-contamination is frequently washing your hands. In fact, hand hygiene is recognized by infection prevention and control experts as the single most important factor in decreasing the spread of infection within any facility, especially healthcare. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) identify the following hand hygiene “touch points”:

    • Before touching a patient
    • Before cleaning and aseptic procedures
    • After bodily fluid exposure
    • After touching a patient
    • After touching a patient’s surroundings

    If no soap, water and towels are available, hand sanitizers limit the spread of microorganisms.

    In addition to hand washing, you can outsmart germs in your facility by keeping critical touch point areas clean and sanitary. Critical touch point areas include:

    • Floors and hallways—Organisms survive up to 5 months on floors.
    • Chair arms—More than 90% are rarely cleaned, and millions of micro-organisms live on chair arms.
    • Door knobs—Viruses such has H1N1 survive from 24 to 48 hours on these surfaces.
    • Bed rails— Vancomycin-resistant enterococci (VRE) survives at least 7 days on bedrails.
    • Sinks and faucets—75% of all sinks contain extremely high levels of microorganisms.
    • Toilet seats—Norovirus survives on toilet seats for 12 hours.

    You can keep these critical touch points clean using chemicals such as:

    • Sterilizer—To destroy or eliminate all forms of microbial life.
    • Limited disinfectant—To use against a specific major group of microorganisms.
    • General disinfectant—To use against a broad spectrum of microorganisms.
    • Hospital disinfectant—To use throughout a health care facility.
    • Common surface disinfectants including:
      • Synthetic phenols—For killing a wide range of organisms; often used in operating rooms.
      • Quats—Highly versatile and cost effective, used to kill a wide range of microorganisms; often used in schools, institutions, supermarkets and hospital settings.
      • Hypochlorite/Bleach—For use as a disinfectant or sanitizer, but not for cleaning; never mix bleach with another chemical.
      • Hydrogen Peroxide—Versatile, sustainable cleaner for glass, hard surfaces, carpets and restrooms.
      • Iodine—Due to its staining properties and acidic qualities, use is restricted to specialized areas, such as surgical settings.
      • Alcohol—For disinfecting smaller surface areas.
    • Sanitizers—For reducing, but not necessarily eliminating, microorganisms from the environment; normally used in food service, food preparation, food processing areas and hand care products.

    Remember these important statistics:

    • Infections are one of the primary reasons patients are admitted to hospitals.
    • Proper disinfection prevents 36% of HAIs.
    • Proper disinfection reduces VRE by 50%.
    • The CDC recommends implementing a critical touch point cleaning program in every health care facility.

    Work with Betco to design a comprehensive program that helps you create a healthier, cleaner environment for your patients, visitors and staff—one that outsmarts germs and stops HAIs before they begin

    Top image via Wikipedia
  • Top Five Floor Care Mistakes that Cause Streaking and How to Fix Them

    Sep 21, 2017

    Clean shiny floors show that you and your Long Term Care Facility take care and pride in cleaning and maintaining the floors. Applying floor finish is a relatively simple process that we may take for granted. All too often, we as floor care professionals, may skip a step or take a shortcut (hard to believe, but it happens). When we get complacent, mistakes can happen. One of the most common floor care complaints is streaking on freshly coated floors. Streaking is unsightly and if you end up with a streaky floor, there are ways to fix it.


    Here are the top five floor care mistakes that cause streaking and how to fix them:

    1. Poor rinsing of an alkaline floor stripper

    A lot of strippers today are no rinse strippers but if too much residue has been left on the floor surface or if an alkaline stripper was not properly rinsed prior to applying floor finish, this will cause your finish to streak. Re-stripping of the floor will be required to fix this and of course, be sure to thoroughly rinse.

    2. Too little floor finish in your mop during application

    Too little floor finish on your mop during application means you are not applying enough finish. This creates streaks on the floor but it can be easily fixed. A scrub and recoat is all that is needed to repair the streaking. Just be sure not to overwork your mop and avoid wringing out the mop too much.

    3. Finish applied too thick

    Floor finish that is applied too heavy can cause the finish to streak. The solution to this is to wait until the finish is completely dry, then dry buff with a blue pad and reapply thin even coats.

    4. Use of a dirty or contaminated mop

    A dirty or contaminated mop will leave streaks of discoloration in the finish. The floor may need to be completely stripped to remove all of the streaking if a dirty mop was used on the first coat. Be sure all of your mop heads have been washed thoroughly before reapplying finish. Throw away old, worn or stained mop heads to avoid accidently using them for applying floor finish.

    5. Not enough dry time between coats

    When you do not allow enough dry time in between coats, also known as “rushing coats”, you can get streaking. This generally will show up after three coats of finish have been applied. The top coat of finish will appear to be dry when subsequent coats are applied and this can trap moisture in the finish causing the “streaking”. If this happens, you should stop applying finish and let the floor completely dry. After the floor is dry, dry buff the surface with a polish pad and recoat.

    Image C/O
  • Clean Hands Affect Your Brand

    Jul 11, 2017

    Creating a home away from home is something that every healthcare facility strives to accomplish. Patients want to stay in a quiet, pleasant and safe environment. Most importantly, cleanliness and environmental hygiene in these facilities are critical to patient safety.

    While thorough cleanliness is crucial to preventing the spread of infection, data shows that patients perceive a high-level of cleanliness as a prerequisite for safe, high-quality care. From restrooms to the entrance and lobby, a patient’s perception is impacted and a healthcare facility’s brand and reputation is affected.

    In a healthcare environment, cross contamination is the number one concern for the healthcare facility, caregivers, patients and their families. With multiple touch points such as door handles, keyboards and sink faucets, it’s no wonder why hand hygiene compliance is a serious issue. Approximately 80% of all infections are transmitted by the hands.

    How can you implement an effective hand hygiene program at your facility? The World Health Organization recommends 5 essential elements for a successful hand hygiene program.

    Step 1 – Gaining Commitment from all operating areas of your facility is critical. All facility and staff are key advocates to reinforce this commitment.

    Step 2 – Educating those chosen to be hand hygiene advocates on the impact of this implementation is the next step.

    Step 3 – Create a Roadmap by surveying your facility for proper placement of both sanitizing and handwashing stations.

    Step 4 – Implementation of the dispenser installation needs careful planning. Optimizing the educational function, or site zone, of the dispenser along with message reinforcement will greatly assist your facility campaign.

    Step 5 – Developing a communication strategy to drive hand hygiene compliance is critical.

    Healthcare facilities must focus on preventing cross contamination for the well-being of patients and healthcare workers. By regularly researching and determining the most effective cleaning practices, healthcare facilities will be able to achieve a higher level of clean, positively impacting the patients’ health and overall experience.

    For more solutions or guidance to proper hand hygiene, visit to learn about our Compass Program.

  • Mitigate the Risk of Costly Slip, Trip and Fall Accidents

    Jul 11, 2017

    Imagine the impact signs have on us today. We use signs to direct us while driving; find groceries at the store; warn us of potential hazards. With so many signs around, is it no surprise that some signs are just blatantly ignored?

    When it comes to reducing the risk of slip and fall injuries, the most used and abused sign is the wet floor sign. Custodians and other facility management personnel who use these signs abuse them by leaving them out when they are no longer needed, which lessens their impact in the facility. By leaving a wet floor sign out for extended periods of time after the floor has dried, how can guests and tenants take them seriously? Even more ironic is that an abandoned wet floor sign itself can become a trip hazard.

    In most cases, the problem with ineffective wet floor signage isn’t the fault of the sign itself. The problem lies with improper use and training of cleaning professionals on how to use the sign in an effective way. Signage should certainly be used to protect everyone from harmful slip, trip and fall accidents. Your wet floor sign should:

    • Cover the actual wet area; isn’t placed before approaching or after entering wet area
    • Stand 28-39 inches tall for increased visibility
    • Be yellow in color with black lettering
    • Be visible from 360-degrees
    • Have a stable base to avoid falling or being easily knocked over
    • Clearly say “Caution: Wet Floor”
    To decrease some risk of accidents, signs should be placed early to give advance notice of the hazard when possible. If a large portion of a floor is expected to remain wet for a long period of time, it may be a good idea to place a barricade around the area.


    Assuming proper signage fails or is misused, property owners and managers could be leaving themselves open to costly slip, trip and fall litigation. It doesn’t take much grace to walk without falling, but sometimes we fall and are lucky to get up with just a bruised ego.

    Others are not so lucky.

    For those who are injured, they join the rising multi-billion dollar industry of slip and fall accident litigation. According to OSHA, the average cost of a slip and fall accident is $22,800 per accident but there is no limit to how much companies may pay.

    Rather than follow stricter safety procedures, some companies quickly settle claims for slip and fall accidents because the cost to do so is built into their budgets. This is a major mistake because the cost of these claims will also come in the form of increased insurance premiums, which gets passed along to their tenants, consumers or guests.

    An imperative solution to reduce the number of slip and fall accidents is to use an alternate method to clean floors that is not only more effective than a wet mop and bucket, but one that also simultaneously leaves the floor dry. This means that no signage may be necessary as the risk of slipping during cleaning is successfully mitigated. Our latest cleaning innovation is the MotoMop™ small area cleaning machine. To find out why MotoMop is right for your facility, visit and use our automated cost calculatorto calculate your savings or call customer service at (888) GO-BETCO for more information.

  • Critical Germ Touchpoints in Education Facilities

    Jul 11, 2017


    When it comes to effective cleaning in school facilities, what most people think about first is the restrooms. In fact, studies have found that parents, when visiting a college or university their son or daughter is considering, invariably visit the restrooms to examine their cleanliness. The reasoning is: clean restrooms mean a well-run school; poorly maintained restrooms, can mean something far different.

    However, many people are often unaware of the most important areas that need proper cleaning; these places are known in the professional cleaning industry as high touch areas. We’ve all seen them but probably have never heard them called this before.

    High touch areas include the following:

    • Light switches
    • Door knobs
    • Railings
    • Tops and sides of chairs and tables
    • Elevator buttons
    The list could go on and on. High touch areas can spread germs to many people. Once a surface is contaminated everyone who touches the surface can spread the germs to other surfaces. This problem is paramount in educational locations because many students fail to wash their hands after using the restrooms.


    This means that custodial workers must pay extra special attention to high touch areas. An EPA registered disinfectant should be used to clean these areas. If the surface is visibly soiled, first the high touch area must be cleaned prior to disinfection. This two-step process can be avoided if using a Betco product clearly labeled that it can be used for cleaning and disinfecting. Using such a product can be a major time saver.

    High touch areas should be cleaned frequently, as often as once per day. Cleaning professionals should use microfiber cleaning cloths because they tend to be more effective at removing germs and bacteria than traditional cleaning cloths. Also, the cloths should be changed frequently and used for the same purpose: never use a microfiber cleaning cloth used to clean restroom fixtures on light switches, as an example.

    While students and teachers may not be aware of how important it is to keep high touch areas properly cleaned, as cleaning professionals, we must be acutely aware of how important keeping these areas clean and sanitary is to protecting the health of all building users, teachers, and staff.

    Contact a Betco representative for all your school cleaning needs and supplies. The health of your educational facility is one of our top priorities. Call (888) GO-BETCO

  • 7 Smart Habits to Stay on Track

    Jul 11, 2017


    The way we do things are constantly evolving. This can make keeping up with industry trends extremely time-consuming and challenging. New technologies, processes and programs are emerging all over the place and may have you wondering what you can do to stay on track in your industry. While these trends rapidly disseminate, there are several habits you can start now to stay up-to-date.

    1. Have a plan. Become aware of your strengths and weaknesses and focus on what goals you can build from them. Setting goals will give you something to work towards, furthering your abilities and skills.
    2. Hold yourself accountable. Once you establish your goals, make it your mission to achieve them. Put in the time and effort it takes to reach your objective. The end result will be well worth it!
    3. Read, listen and watch. Attending online webinars and onsite training sessions will expand your knowledge. Look for opportunities to engage in the latest and greatest trends in your industry.
    4. Back-up your knowledge with tools. There are various training programs that are available at no cost to you. Certifications will show your expertise and proficiency.
    5. Keep your skills current. Look out for the most relevant skill-sets in your industry and pursue opportunities to make them one of your strengths.
    6. Seek professional development opportunities. Building a network of like-minded individuals that encourage your professional growth can help you reach or even surpass your goals.
    7. Pay attention to updated materials within your industry. Minimize mistakes by ensuring you are utilizing the most current tools.

    If you have any questions, please visit, call (888) GO-BETCO or please contact us at

  • Don’t Let Winter A-SALT Your Floors

    Jul 11, 2017


    Winter is in full swing and is taking charge with snow, slush and ice. While bundling up and staying warm inside, make sure you don’t give your floors the cold shoulder. It’s important to be aware of the dangers that the winter elements can leave behind on both carpet and hard surface floors.

    As people come and go in a facility they stomp, shake and dump snow, slush and salt on floors everywhere. This snowy, slushy mess doesn’t end after it dries and leaves behind un-melted rock salt. Stains as white as snow can be seen on all types of floor surfaces. While these stains are pesky and damaging, they are preventable and your floors are savable.

    Salt stains are not harmful if attended to quickly. The faster you remove the moisture and chemicals, the less time they have to damage your floors. Keep absorbent towels or rags near your doors to clean up the messes as they occur, and a vacuum or broom to remove any dry residue.

    Use a reliable matting system. A matting system acts as a first line of defense against tracked-in contaminants on your floors. Over 80% of dirt and residue are brought in by people entering a facility; a good entrance matting system can trap 90% of this dirt and debris that is brought in!


    Prevention is the best defense. It’s important to keep in mind that all floor types are vulnerable during the winter. Using a daily maintenance cleaner is one of the most important steps to extend the life of your floors.

    It is important to keep in mind that your floors are vulnerable during the winter. While there is danger afoot due to a combination of increased moisture and salt, remember to practice the above tips to avoid havoc on both carpet and hard surface floors.

    If you have any questions, please visit, call (888) GO-BETCO or please contact us at

  • 'Tis the Flu Season

    Jul 11, 2017


    The last thing anyone wants during the holiday season is the flu. During the hustle and bustle this time of year, it’s important to practice effective hand hygiene and protect your health so you can feel your best while shopping, traveling and celebrating. So how can you focus on spreading holiday cheer and not germs this flu season? Try some of these tips so you can stay merry and healthy.

    Get the rest you need. Lack of sleep can affect your immune system and make you more susceptible to illness. After long days of running errands, traveling or attending a holiday party, be sure to give your body the rest it needs.

    Sanitize your hands and your surroundings. While the spirit of the season may be all around us, so are numerous types of bacteria. Seats on a plane or bus, your desk at work and shopping carts are common places for you to pick-up unwanted germs. Hand washing can reduce the risk of respiratory infections by 20%, so protect yourself by washing your hands and sanitizing your surroundings before touching them.


    If you’re not feeling well, stay in. You don’t feel like yourself when you’re sick. While it can be hard to miss out on some holiday fun, it’s important to put your health first. Let people know you won’t be able to attend a gathering if you’re feeling under the weather. They’ll understand and appreciate your mindfulness to allow them to spread cheer, not your germs.

    If you are sick, don’t prepare food. Bacteria is not a favorable secret ingredient. It’s important to prevent cross-contamination since 80% of all infections are transmitted by hands. Be courteous of others and don’t contaminate your famous holiday dish with your illness.

    Stay hydrated. Water helps your body transport nutrients to keep you energized and healthy. Nourish your body by following the 8x8 rule; drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water each day.

    Take in holiday joy, not germs. Those cookies in the break room and bowl of roasted peanuts at the holiday party are tempting to pick up and eat, but sharing is not always caring when it comes to festive treats. Use the proper utensils when adding food to your plate and steer clear of food that has been touched by other people. Your appetite and your health will be satisfied.

    If you have any questions, please visit, call (888) GO-BETCO or please contact us at

  • Introducing the Compass™ Hand Hygiene Program

    Jul 11, 2017


    We are excited to announce our latest innovation, the Compass™ Hand Hygiene Program! Compass is the first and only dispenser that actively guides each user to proper hand hygiene practices with each and every use.

    The Compass dispenser features an LCD screen that walks through each step for proper handwashing or sanitizing as outlined by the World Health Organization.

    More than just a dispenser, the Compass program empowers facility managers and cleaning and maintenance staff to build healthier environments by using a full platform of market-specific support materials.

    Implementation Guides


    The Compass hand hygiene program is a fully customizable hand hygiene solution for any facility, in any market. For program implementation, take advantage of the full implementation guide for your market, available on

    Table Tents, Posters, and Billboards

    Educational material customization is the key to a consistent brand message that tells patients, guests, employees and others that your brand is invested in improving health and hygiene in your facilities.

    Customize your market-specific table tents, posters and dispenser billboards using our online customization tool. Sharing your commitment to your healthy community is as simple as point-and-click!

    Market-specific customization includes:

    • Acute Care
    • Long Term Care
    • K-12 Education
    • Higher Education
    • Food Service
    • Property Management


    Custom Logo and Message Inserts

    Using the online customization tool, you can upload your business or school logo for even more customization options. Proudly display your logo inside the sight window of your Compass dispenser for public awareness.

    Compass is More than Just a Dispenser

    It's about building a healthier community, together.

    According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), 80 percent of all infections are spread by the hands. Now you have the power to make a positive change in your community!

    Handwashing education in the community:

    • Reduces respiratory illnesses, like colds, in the general population by 16-21%
    • Reduces the number of people who get sick with diarrhea by 31%
    • Reduces diarrheal illness in people with weakened immune systems by 58%
    The Compass Hand Hygiene Program improves the health of your guests, customers and staff while reducing the spread of germs that cause illness.


    Watch the video below to learn more about the Compass program.


    For other questions and ordering information, please visit us online at or call Customer Service at (888) GO-BETCO.

  • FDA Issues Final Rule on Triclosan

    Jul 11, 2017

    The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued the rule that 19 active ingredients are no longer considered GRAS/GRAE (Generally Recognized as Safe/Effective) for use in over-the-counter (OTC) consumer antiseptic washes intended for use as either a hand wash or a body wash. This rule goes into effect on September 6, 2017.


    The FDA states: “On or after this date any OTC consumer antiseptic wash drug product containing an ingredient that we have found in this final rule to be not GRAS/GRAE or to be misbranded cannot be initially introduced or initially delivered for introduction into interstate commerce.”

    One of the active ingredients affected by this ruling is triclosan, the most widely-used active ingredient in OTC consumer antiseptic washes.

    Betco® already offers many non-triclosan skin care solutions that comply with this new rule. In the next 12 months, we plan to introduce additional skin cleansers that will meet this criteria for consumer antiseptic handwashing for use with any of our innovative hand hygiene platforms.

    This ruling does not affect antiseptics used by healthcare professionals, antiseptics used by food industry professionals or consumer antiseptic rubs (i.e. hand sanitizers). Consumer antiseptics are defined as those primarily used in homes, schools, daycares or other public settings.

    You can find full details of the FDA ruling here.

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