Important skin care for staff members – guidance

Some members of staff can experience broken skin, rashes and increased dermatitis with increased level of hand washing and universal infection control measures. Occupational Health have provided some tips for looking after skin that you can use and still stay safe at work:

  • You CAN still use Alco gels as an option between hand washes – even on forearms! Remember that you do need to wash your hands with soap and water after 5 applications though.
  • When you wash your hands with the GOJO soap, please wet your hands first and only use 1 pump of the product. This is enough cleanser to decolonise your hands but you do have to be able to rinse it all off properly. Using more product will cause skin to break.
  • Pat dry your hands as often as you can manage.
  • Try to use the trust approved emollients after every hand wash. You need to apply enough so that it will sink in quickly and not so much that it leaves a sticky residue on the skin. Remember to include your forearms!
  • Complement this by using a good thick hand cream 3-5 times per day. Thick hand creams take 20 minutes or so to sink in, so think about practical times when you could do this. Try to make sure you spread the use of these throughout the day.
  • Managing the skin on your face is really important when you are wearing masks all day. Cleanse and moisturise your skin at both ends of the day. Moisturisers need to be applied at least 30 minutes before wearing fitted face masks. If you can cleanse your skin and apply a light moisturiser half-way through the day, that will help. Just remember to allow 30 minutes for it to be absorbed so you don’t compromise your safety.
  • Contact occupational health via our helpline if you need any help or support with managing any skin problems at work.