Handwashing for Life

Overcoming Underwashing
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Glossary beginning with N

A glossary of technical terms related to handwashing. Select a letter above to begin.



National Environmental Health Association, a professional society with more than 4,500 members that offers educational and motivational opportunities in the field of environmental health and protection. NEHA offers technical workshops, credential programs, an annual conference and exhibition and publishes the Journal of Environmental Health.


Or norwalk, noroviruses are a group of viruses that cause viral gastroenteritis, also known as acute non-bacterial gastroenteritis or food poisoning. Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, diarrhea, low-grade fever, chills, anorexia, headache and fatigue. Noroviruses are transmitted by fecal-oral contamination through water and food vehicles, and by person-to-person transmission. Pollution of shellfish waters and poor personal hygiene are common contributors. Infected persons contaminate all foods other than shellfish. Noroviruses are not a notifiabledisease in the United States and therefore estimates are unreliable. However, due to the mildness of some viral gastroenteritis infections,noroviruses are grossly under-detected and underreported. Noroviruses are responsible for approximately 1/3 of all viral gastroenteritis in people over the age of 2. Formerly call Norwalk virus.

Novel H1N1

A new influenza virus spreading person-to-person worldwide, first documented in Mexico in March 2009 and in the United States in April 2009. The World Health Organization (WHO) labeled it a pandemic in June 2009. Originally dubbed "swine flu," this new virus is actually very different than the flu viruses that are common in pigs. H1N1 is a combination of bird, swine and human viruses that is spread much like the seasonal flu; through coughing and sneezing by people with the virus. Touching a surface already contaminated with flu virus particles and then touching one's mouth, nose or eyes also spreads the virus. The chances of catching H1N1 this way can be lessened by performing proper and frequent hand washing and surface cleaning.

Common H1N1 symptoms include cough, fever, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, headache, body aches and fatigue, and less often diarrhea and vomiting. Symptoms can be mild to severe, with virus shedding occurring 1 day prior to the onset of symptoms until 5 to 7 days after. Although the majority of sufferers recover from the flu within a week without hospitalization or additional treatment beyond oral anti-viral medication, individuals with weak immune systems are at risk of serious complications and even death. A vaccine is currently available to high-risk individuals including children, pregnant women and those with chronic illnesses. (see Swine Flu)

NSF Certification

NSF is a provider of third-party certification, with programs in both food and water.

NSF Protocol P 155

NSF Protocol P155: Disposable Food Contact Gloves is a comprehensive protocol for disposable foodcontact gloves. It covers disposable single task gloves used in food handling and preparation, including latex, vinyl, nitrile and polyethylene formulations.

HandsOn™ System

HandsOn System

5 steps to convert underwashing to under control. Set and track your risk-based ServeReady® Hands and TouchReady® Surface standards.

SaniTwice® for Catered Events

SaniTwice for Catered Events

Uncompromised hand cleanliness for those serving food at venues without running water.

Teaching Videos

Teaching Videos

Globally recognized for their ease of use in any language. Available in DVD and MP4 file download.

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