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The Heath Protection Agency has issued a reminder to people, especially those responsible for young children, to ensure a good level of hand hygiene is maintained when visiting petting farms this spring and summer.
Outbreaks of illnesses associated with the direct contact with farm animals in petting and feeding areas, as well as contact with the droppings of animals on contaminated surfaces, peak in the spring and summer. This is when visits to petting farms tend to be more popular, although outbreaks can occur at other times.
Dr Bob Adak, head of the gastrointestinal disease department at the HPA, said: “Farm visits can be a very enjoyable experience for both children and adults and a few simple precautions will help avoid illness and ensure everyone enjoys a fun day out.”
“Children need to be carefully supervised to ensure that they don’t put their hands in their mouth directly after petting the animals, which naturally carry germs.”
The importance of hand washing with soap and water after contact with the animals is vital to effectively remove bacteria and reduce the risk of becoming unwell. If hand washing facilities are not available Initial Hygiene’s UltraProtect™ hand sanitizer can provide up to 6 hours protection against germs such as E. coli which is often found present on farms.
For further information on Initial Hygiene’s UltraProtect™ please call 0800 313 4972 or visit www.initial.co.uk/ultraprotect
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