Welcome to Professional and Technical Services (PTS) – experts in chemical disinfection for infection prevention. Our goal is to educate and provide you the latest resources related to cleaning and disinfection of environmental surfaces, medical devices and hands. As specialists in disinfectant chemistries, microbiology, environmental cleaning and disinfection, facility assessments and policy and procedure creation we are dedicated to helping any person or facility who uses chemical disinfectants.

Our expertise is utilized by Infection Preventionists, Public Health Experts, First Responders, Dentists, Physicians, Nurses, Veterinarians, Aestheticians, Environmental Services professionals and janitorial product distributors to develop more sustainable cleaning and disinfection practices in North America.

Our commitment to providing chemical disinfectant education is more than business, it is a passion.

Friday, January 18, 2019

New Year, New Virus!


In March 2014, I wrote a blog Ebola – the stuff my dreams are made of! talking about the outbreak of Ebola in Guinea and how I found my passion for all things outbreaks and infection control. Over the course of writing the Talk Clean To Me blogs I’ve had the opportunity to talk about emerging pathogens that pop up in different parts of the world impacting humans and animals alike and when I came across an article talking about a new virus similar to Ebola I had to do a little more reading!

Published in Nature Microbiology, researchers from China introduced the Mĕnglà virus, a virus in the same family (filovirus) as Ebola found in fruit bats. Named for the county it was discovered in, Mĕnglà virus shares many of the characteristics of the deadly Ebola virus. While there is no evidence that Mĕnglà virus has been transmitted to humans, the history of known Ebola-like viruses being transmitted to humans makes it worth investigating further.  Mĕnglà virus is the 7th filovirus that has been found.  Genetically it has a 32-54% similarity with other known filoviruses and sits somewhere between the Ebola and Marburg viruses on the evolutionary tree, however is different enough to warrant its own genus Dianlovirus.
Bats have been found to harbour more than 65 human pathogens and are particularly well known as carriers of filoviruses. While it’s early days in the research and relatively little is known about the Mĕnglà virus at this point, the early findings do indicate that it shares many functional similarities with both Ebola and Marburg viruses. Mĕnglà virus has been found to gain entry into cells using the same molecular receptor as other pathogenic filoviruses, suggesting it could have the potential to be as deadly as other filoviruses and is just as likely to be able to jump across into different species.

Does this mean we panic? No. But it does remind us that in the world of viruses nothing stays still and that we must continue to be vigilant and remind ourselves that with globalization things are closer than we think and can be whisked around the world in under 15 hours (the time it takes to fly direct from Toronto to Shanghai).

Bugging Off!

Nicole

Friday, January 11, 2019

#FF Take the Education Challenge!


Do you set New Year’s resolutions?  I don’t.  I stopped years ago.  I was often disappointed with myself in breaking the resolution by the middle of January.  This year I’ve decided to do monthly challenges with my husband and son as well as with my gaggle of girlfriends.   Each month we do one (or two) different challenges.  For the month of January our challenge is no alcohol and for February it’s 30 minutes of physical activity outdoors.  The real challenge being, who WANTS to go outside in February when it can be icy cold outside?!

If you’re up for a challenge, I have one!  Challenge yourself to set aside 1 hour every day for education.  The Webber Training teleclasses are a great way to attain this goal.  You can either join in the Teleclass or access the recordings and listen at your convenience.  As noted in past blogs, the Teleclass Education by Webber Training is an international lecture series on topics related to infection prevention and control. The objective is to bring the best possible education to the widest possible audience with the fewest possible barriers when trying to access it.  Here's the list of teleclasses for the first quarter of 2019.



For more information on Webber Training, including a full list of the upcoming Infection Prevention and Control Teleclasses, please visit www.webbertraining.com.  If you’re a Twitter follower you can also be part of the conversation during the sessions by following #WebberTraining.

I hope many of you will take the opportunity to listen to these teleclasses and share them with your colleagues! 

Bugging Off!

Nicole

Friday, January 4, 2019

Welcome to 2019!


If, like me, you were able to take some time off over the holidays, you are likely slowly trying to edge yourself back into the work routine and rid yourself of sugar cravings after eating so many sweets leading up to and during the holidays.
  
I really hate the fact that “the older you get, the faster life goes”. I’m still in shock that 2018 has ended. Case in point was the fact that Christmas break flew by! I was fortunate enough to have 11 days off, so one would think I’d come back refreshed. However, with 4 family functions, a multi-day hockey tournament, purging and organizing the house to get ready for a major renovation and trying to figure out what to do for my son’s birthday, which is coming up in 11 days, I cannot say I had much time to sit and relax!

In past years, I have created themes for each quarter or focused on specific markets. As we enter our 8th year for Talk Clean To Me, what I can say is that based on the plethora of research that was published over 2018 about cleaning and disinfection and the number of outbreaks and new or re-emerging pathogens we are seeing in every market, finding a topic for the 2019 blogs should not be an issue.  If Google is right, I should have plenty of material to work from based on the number of hits for the following searches:

1.      Disinfection – 31.9 million results
2.      Infection Transmission – 202 million results
3.      Emerging Infectious Diseases – 79 million results
4.      Infection Diseases – 97.8 million results
5.      Influenza – 18.6 million results

The starting lineup for 2019 will include blogs on bacterial contamination of stethoscopes, how wet contact time impacts efficacy, significant outbreaks or outbreaks resulting from break downs in cleaning, disinfection and sterilization to name a few.

Wishing everyone a wonderful January, a lovely February, a peaceful March, a stress-free April, a fun-filled May, joy that lasts from June to November, and finally a happy December...I just hope this year doesn't fly by as fast as 2018! I’m not getting any younger you know!

Bugging Off!

Nicole

Friday, December 21, 2018

Wrapping Up 2018!


As I write the last blog for 2018, I’m amazed yet again how fast the year flew by.  Aside from all of the traveling we do over Christmas Day and Boxing Day and the inevitable family drama such as an under-cooked turkey, melted ice cream or relatives arriving late for dinner, I love the Christmas Season.  I love coming up with a theme for our family Christmas card, I love decorating and baking, but most of all I LOVE the arrival of Elfie (our elf on the shelf).  Our main floor looks like Santa’s elves have attacked with trinkets, decorations, candles, plants and greenery covering every surface and corner.  Each year I OBSESS over my gift wrapping theme – paper, ribbons and gift tags.  I may even go so far to organize the theme of the wrapping by house and/or family... Like I said, I’m obsessed.  

As we wrap up 2018, I love looking back over the blogs that have been shared.  They paint a story of what has transpired throughout the year from emerging pathogens and new trends to areas we had not considered and are now becoming an infection prevention concern.  They also highlight the breadth of interest you, the readers have in the topics I’m sharing.   As you can see from the top 10 Talk Clean To Me blogs for 2018 the topics are pretty varied!

1. Pools Poised for Plagues  - discussed a MMWR Report showing that nearly one-third of disease outbreaks caused by chlorinated or treated water can be linked to hotel pools and hot tubs. 
2. Infection Control for Basic Beauty – summarizing my experience at one of the largest Professional Beauty Trade Shows and the difference between Canada and the USA in terms of the level of cleaning and disinfection required for tools and implements.
3. Rub My Feet  - did not lead to anyone offering a foot rub, but did talk about the potential for UV-C devices to reduce the bioburden on the soles of our shoes. 
4. Let the Sun Shine In – summarized a study that showed bacteria levels in dust in dark rooms was higher than in those exposed to sunlight.
5. Spring Showers Leave Bath Toys in the Dust – reviewed a study highlighting the potential of children’s bath toys to become contaminated with pathogenic organisms.
6. Under the Weather?  Under Productive! – discussed how influenza is associated with greater workplace productivity loss (sick days and presenteeism) than any other acute respiratory illnesses.
7. Colon Infection Control – may have you rethinking getting a colonic after an investigation showing that the cleaning agents being used would have been completely inadequate to eliminate hepatitis C, hepatitis B, or HIV should they be present on the instruments used to perform the colonics.
8. Cholera Comes to Canada – summarized an outbreak of cholera associated with eating herring eggs.
9. #TBT but on a Fri-Yay: V-logging anyone – shared a really bad video of myself talking about how cleaning can control infections and costs.
10.Are you ready for some football?  - looked at ways to minimize getting sick at your Super Bowl Party!

I’m not exactly sure what 2019 is going to bring, but I look forward to finding more interesting and fun topics to blog about and hope you’ll continue reading! Until next year, wishing you every happiness this holiday season and throughout the coming year!

Bugging Off!

Nicole