Infection Control Policy
Our infection control policy is based on guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO), the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE), El Paso County Public Health (EPCPH) and training courses and articles written by subject matter experts in infection prevention and control.
The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has made everyone aware of the importance of practicing infection prevention and control. Our Infection Control Policy includes precautions for reducing or eliminating infection and contamination caused by bacteria, viruses, mold, mildew, fungus, and parasites.
Jerry Lucas, CEO, has completed multiple online courses from the CDC and WHO in infection control and prevention and reads infection control websites, news, research, and articles from credible sources including the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC), the leading professional association for infection preventionists (IPs). He serves as the Infection Control Officer for ABC Legal Docs, LLC in Colorado Springs.
1.0 Electronic Communication Preferred
To minimize or eliminate personal contact time, whenever possible, business meetings, training, product and service delivery, and ordering of business supplies, equipment, and services will be accomplished by using electronic communication methods including telephone conversation, teleconference, website, blog, email, webinar, video conference, prerecorded audio or video, or podcast, rather than in person.
If you use our electronic services, you agree to keep your operating system, application software, antivirus, antimalware, and security software up to date with the latest versions. You agree to allow us to record and store the audio and video files for your remote online notary transaction as required by law. For remote online notary services, you certify that you are located inside the state of Colorado.
2.0 Pickup and Delivery of Mail, Packages, Orders
To minimize or eliminate personal contact time, whenever possible, mail, packages, food, groceries, and products ordered for purchase will be delivered to the home or office or picked up at curbside or drive-thru window using no-contact delivery, rather than entering a place of business.
Drive-thru or online banking services will be used. When sending mail or packages, self-service kiosks, mailboxes and drop boxes will be used rather than counter service.
When pumping gas, disposable gloves or a paper towel will be used to hold the pump handle.
Disposable gloves will be used to insert a payment card into a machine or to enter data on a keypad or touchscreen. Payment cards will be disinfected after use.
3.0 Receiving and Quarantine Area
Upon receipt, mail, packages, and delivered physical items will be brought to a separate receiving area and placed in open-lid storage containers while using tongs or wearing disposable gloves or reusable rubber gloves.
Arriving items may be disinfected with an Ultraviolet C (UV-C) germicidal lamp, an EPA-registered disinfectant including Clorox Disinfectant Wipes, or quarantined for a holding time of 24 hours or more, depending on the type of surface and the item received. Note: The Pikes Peak Library is placing returned material in a 72-hour quarantine before processing and recirculating. This time limit exceeds public health recommendations.
Envelopes, paper, junk mail, cardboard, and packaging materials will be placed in appropriate trash or recycling containers in the receiving area. Tongs and reusable rubber gloves will be disinfected after use. Disposable gloves will be discarded in a no-touch trash container after use.
4.0 Social Distancing
When meeting in person for shopping, conducting business, training, notarizing, conversation, or socializing, we will maintain a minimum social distance of six feet from other people as a precaution for avoiding airborne droplets created by coughing or sneezing.
Our personal greetings will not include shaking hands, fist bumps, elbow bumps, hugging, or physical touching, but may include verbal greetings and non-contact methods of greeting such as waving. Where available, self-service kiosks, self-service checkout, and contactless payment methods will be used rather than clerks.
Payments made or received will be done using a credit card, debit card, bank transfer, or check rather than exchanging cash by hand.
5.0 Health Screening and Isolation
We will not meet in person with customers or vendors if we have symptoms of coughing, sore throat, fever, chills, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, the recent loss of taste or smell, sneezing, runny nose, or infectious disease.
We will not meet with customers or vendors who have any of these symptoms or who have other members of their household, co-workers or place of business experiencing these symptoms.
Since senior citizens, age 60 and over, and individuals with underlying respiratory or cardiac problems, or weakened immune systems are considered vulnerable to a higher risk of serious illness or possible death due to infection, we are not accepting meetings in person with these individuals unless high-quality Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is used.
When possible, we will attempt to provide remote support and remote notary services through electronic communications as authorized by law to avoid personal contact.
6.0 Immune System Support
We read books and articles about health and nutrition needed to maintain a healthy immune system. We eat recommended foods and take vitamins, minerals, and supplements including vitamins A, B12, C, D3, E, selenium, zinc, mushroom powder, probiotics, fiber, garlic, turmeric, ginger, elderberry, echinacea, green tea, and water. We will get vaccinated as recommended by our doctor.
Consult with your doctor for advice on foods, nutrition, dietary supplements, and vaccinations. We do not provide health or medical advice.
7.0 Hand Hygiene, Sneezing, Coughing
We will wash our hands with soap and water for 30 seconds after contact with known or potentially contaminated persons, surfaces, or objects.
We will use Dial Antibacterial Liquid Hand Soap, Dial Professional Antimicrobial Liquid Hand Soap, Dawn Ultra Liquid Dishwashing Soap, or a similar soap product.
We will use a clean paper towel for drying our hands, turning off the faucet, and then discard it in a no-touch trash container.
If soap and water are not readily available, we will use liquid, gel or foaming hand sanitizer or sanitizing wipes with an alcohol (ethanol, ethyl alcohol) content of 60% to 90% (hospital-grade preferred), or isopropyl alcohol (isopropanol, IPA) content of 70% to 90%, including 3M Avagard D, Dial Professional Antibacterial Hand Sanitizer, Purell, Germ-X, or a similar sanitizer product. Alcohol-based sanitizer will not be stored near a flame, heat source, or in direct sunlight. We will not use hand sanitizers that are not alcohol-based.
We will keep hand sanitizer available at home, in the office, in the field, and our vehicle and briefcase and make it available if needed by our customers or vendors. In the vehicle, we will only keep small travel-size bottles of sanitizer, stored in a covered center console or glove compartment, out of direct sunlight.
We will use a tissue or paper towel, not a sleeve or elbow, to cover a sneeze or cough, then dispose of it in the trash and wash or disinfect our hands.
We will avoid touching our eyes, nose, and mouth unless our hands are clean and disinfected.
We will inspect our hands for dryness, cracks, rashes, cuts, scratches, and insect bites and treat with hand lotion, moisturizer, antiseptic, and wound covering as needed.
8.0 First Aid Kits
We will keep basic, portable first aid kits available in the home, office, and vehicle for treating minor cuts, scrapes, insect bites, burns, and bruises. All kits must include a first aid instruction booklet. One or more first aid kits must be equipped with all items to meet ANSI 2015 Class A compliance requirements or better. The Infection Control Officer will inspect first aid kits regularly and replace used, missing, damaged, or expired items.
No medication will be administered by us except for over-the-counter topical wound care.
9.0 Meeting Location Requirements
For mobile appointments, we will meet with customers and students at a public location, such as a restaurant, coffee shop, library, office, lobby, or another meeting place that has a policy of cleaning and disinfecting according to CDC guidelines, industry rules, and local public health department rules, where applicable.
Meetings at hospitals, clinics, medical offices, skilled nursing facilities, nursing homes, rehab centers, assisted living, and senior apartments must follow facility and public health department rules, CDC guidelines, and our Infection Control Policy.
The meeting location should have adequate ventilation with fresh air or an air purifier with a High-Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filter. The location should be clean and free from trash, waste, hazardous chemicals, insects, and pests.
Only the signing parties may be present within six feet of each other. No other adults, children, pets, or other animals are allowed in the signing zone. Signers must bring and use their own pens, no sharing of pens.
When not writing or signing, avoid touching doors, tables, counters, desks, armrests, and other surfaces or objects unless they are disinfected.
Due to unknown environmental and sanitation conditions, we will not enter a private home, residence, apartment, vehicle, or garage as a meeting location.
Weather permitting, we can meet outside on a porch, patio, sidewalk, in a driveway, parking lot, or public park, or while seated in our vehicle with windows rolled up, using our disinfected aluminum clipboard as a writing surface.
Where available, a glass, clear plastic, or Plexiglass barrier, window or door will be used as a germ shield.
We will use a disinfected surface or a clear plastic antimicrobial desk pad for a working surface on a desk, table, counter, or vehicle hood. We will use an aluminum clipboard as a writing surface if no other writing surface is available.
10.0 Cleaning and Disinfecting
We will clean the desk pad and clipboard with soap and water as needed and wipe them with an EPA-registered disinfectant including Clorox Disinfectant Wipes before and after each use.
We will clean other frequently-touched surfaces that we own including desks, tables, countertops, chairs, briefcases, phones, keyboards, touchscreens, light switches, controls, doorknobs, handles, knobs, faucets, armrests, handrails, steering wheels, and keys with soap and water as needed and wipe down with an EPA-registered disinfectant including Clorox Disinfectant Wipes as needed.
Studies have shown that viruses can survive for these times, if not disinfected: aerosol 4 hrs, copper 4 hrs, cardboard 24 hrs, stainless steel 72 hrs, plastic 72 hrs, glass 96 hrs.
We will launder clothes and our car seat cover using laundry detergent and Clorox Disinfecting Bleach, Clorox Germicidal Bleach, or Lysol Laundry Sanitizer.
When using bleach and water to disinfect floors, surfaces, or objects, a fresh batch of disinfecting solution will be prepared for each disinfecting day. Bleach and other cleaners will not be used after the package expiration date.
An Ultraviolet C (UV-C) germicidal lamp, hydrogen peroxide, disinfectant spray, high temperature, and steam may also be used for disinfection.
11.0 Antimicrobial, Antibacterial Surfaces, Supplies
When needed, we will use a clear plastic desk pad infused with an antimicrobial or antibacterial additive, including the Artistic Eco-Clear desk pad with Microban, that inhibits the growth of bacteria, mold, and mildew.
When meeting in person for a transaction, you will place your photo ID card on our clipboard or inside a clear plastic bag or sheet protector that we provide. You will follow our instructions for signing and then place your signed document on our clipboard. We will maintain social distancing of six feet during the signing process.
After notarizing a paper document, we may return the document to you by placing it inside a clear plastic sheet protector or manila folder infused with an antimicrobial or antibacterial additive, including C-Line Antimicrobial Sheet Protectors with Microban or Smead Antimicrobial manila file folders.
Note: Microban is infused into the product material during the manufacturing process, not as a coating, so it is intrinsic to the material and will never rub off or expire. It prevents the growth of bacteria, fungi, yeast, mold, and mildew.
As a germ shield, before you sign our notary journal, you may wear gloves or we may place an antimicrobial sheet protector or a blank sheet of paper on the journal page, with a rectangular cutout window for your signature.
If a thumbprint is required in our notary journal, we will wipe the inkpad with a disinfectant wipe before and after each use. You will wipe your thumb with a disinfectant wipe before and after leaving a thumbprint. Or, we may use disposable, single-use fingerprint ink strips rather than an inkpad.
We will use antimicrobial towels for cleaning, including Eurow CleanAide microfiber towels embedded with EPA and FDA registered NOVARON, a silver-based antimicrobial agent.
Note: Microfiber picks up over 99% of allergens, germs, and bacteria, locking them deep within the textile’s fibers. Then, contaminant-attacking NOVARON silver ions are released within the towel, stopping the growth of bacteria.
12.0 Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
We will maintain an adequate supply of personal protective equipment (PPE) including medical or surgical type face masks, N95 non-valved respirators, disposable gloves, safety glasses or goggles, clear face shields, and disposable shoe covers.
The proper type of face mask or respirator must be used to filter out the desired foreign substance, based on particle size. A face mask or respirator is additional protection, not a substitute for social distancing. An N95 respirator is NIOSH (National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health) certified to have at least 95% Particle Filtration Efficiency (PFE) for very small test particles (0.3 microns, 300 nanometers) when properly fitted to the wearer with a tight seal. Due to air leakage, an N95 respirator cannot be worn with a beard.
A medical or surgical mask is not certified by NIOSH but may be U.S. FDA (Food and Drug Administration) approved and tested per ASTM (American Society for Testing and Materials) standard test method F2101. Look for a high Bacterial Filtration Efficiency (BFE) rating. It is designed to protect others by confining droplets when the wearer speaks, coughs, or sneezes. It should have a water-resistant outer surface to block incoming spray, splashes, and droplets, but it is not fitted or sealed, so contaminated air may be inhaled through leaks around the edges of the mask.
We will use a medical or surgical type face mask with a minimum rating of ASTM Level 1 (BFE >= 95%, PFE >= 95% @ 0.1 microns) or ASTM Level 2 (BFE >= 98%, PFE >= 98% @ 0.1 microns).
For better filtering of bacteria and viruses as small as 0.3 microns, a medical or surgical mask should contain a layer of fabric with a Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV) rating of 13 or higher. A MERV 13 filter can be inserted in a pouch between the outer layers of the face mask, not directly in contact with the nose and mouth. Fiberglass may not be used in any mask or filter.
We do not use homemade face masks. Studies have shown they are ineffective compared to high-quality manufactured multi-layer medical or surgical masks using small pore size material. Allergen-blocking fabric has a pore size of 2 to 10 microns. Some mask fabrics contain embedded or coated antimicrobial material including copper or silver.
Nanofiber masks filter out very small particles of 20 nm and larger, suitable for bacteria and viruses.
The human eye can generally see particles about 40 microns or larger. Bacteria are viewed with an optical microscope. Viruses are viewed with an electron microscope.
Virus sizes range from about 20 to 400 nanometers (nm) in diameter. SARS coronavirus 100 to 140 nm. Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) 60 to 140 nm. Influenza virus 80 to 120 nm. Bacteria diameter sizes are about 400 to 2000 nm or 0.4 to 2.0 micrometers (um) or microns. Helium molecules are about 0.15 nm, carbon dioxide 0.23 nm, water 0.27 nm, oxygen 0.29 nm, nitrogen 0.30 nm.
For comparison, the sizes of various substances (in microns) are: wood smoke 1, fungi spores 1 to 10, mold spores 3 to 20, red blood cells 7, dust mite waste 10, talcum powder 10, coal dust 10, flour 10, dust particles 10 to 100, pollen 10 to 50, white blood cells 20, human hair 70, table salt 100, coffee grounds 100 to 1000, fine sand 125, granulated sugar 250, sawdust 300, fertilizer 800, raindrops 200 to 1000. Car oil filter 10 to 40, coffee grounds filter 10 to 20, fine mesh 20×20 window screen hole size 1000.
Aerosol droplets from breathing 0.2, talking 5, coughing 8, sneezing 75 and 360. Sneezing produces about 18 times more droplets than coughing.
PPE will be used as required by public health orders or guidelines, safety regulations, business, shopping, and medical facility rules, and at our option when we believe it is beneficial or needed for infection prevention risk management.
You will provide your own effective PPE and wear it properly, fully covering your nose and mouth, when required by public health order or guidelines, safety regulations, site rules, or when we are wearing PPE. If you are unable to wear a face mask due to a medical condition, you will wear a clear face shield, fully covering your eyes, nose, and mouth, or remain behind a clear glass, plastic, or Plexiglass barrier or window, or maintain a social distance of six feet or more.
Reusable PPE will be disinfected with an EPA-registered disinfectant or other approved method. Disposable single-use equipment will be discarded in the trash after use.
13.0 HEPA Air Purifier
We may use an air purifier with a HEPA (High-Efficiency Particulate Air) filter to clean the surrounding air. A HEPA filter captures at least 99.97% of all particles of 0.3 microns and larger. An air purifier with a built-in ultraviolet C (UV-C) germicidal lamp may be used to destroy smaller-sized viruses. An activated carbon filter may be included to trap unwanted gases.
14.0 Infection Control Policy Updates
This Infection Control Policy will be reviewed periodically by the Infection Control Officer and updated as needed.