15:39 PM

Ohio State offers free online course on public-space infection prevention

Businesses will learn best practices to reduce disease spread

A free, online video course on how businesses serving the public can help prevent the spread of infection through cleaning and disinfecting public spaces is being offered by The Ohio State University’s College of Education and Human Ecology.

The course, “Infection Prevention 101 for Public Spaces,” explores best-in-class infection prevention strategies for helping to keep public spaces safer, including scientific context and practical tips.

“This online class helps those responsible for the cleaning and disinfection of public spaces understand not only how to reduce the spread of infection but also why this foundational knowledge is so critical to elevating overall health and wellness in the workplace,” said Anne Turpin, a senior lecturer in Ohio State’s Hospitality Management program who teaches the course.

Turpin, who has 20 years of experience in the hospitality industry, worked with faculty, infection prevention specialists and other professionals to develop the course content.

“Successful completion of the certificate program is valuable on many levels,” Turpin said. “It serves as a visible commitment to healthier environments for guests, patients and team members and it serves as a free professional developmental opportunity for individuals."

While the course focuses on health care and hospitality, the content is also relevant to other industries adjusting to their “new normal” amid the COVID-19 pandemic, including retail, offices, schools, restaurants and more, Turpin said.

Experience Columbus, the destination marketing organization for the city, has adopted the course as part of its Live Forward Pledge, designed to help restart the city’s tourism economy following the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We recognize that there is an opportunity to further educate hospitality industry workers with foundational knowledge about infectious disease prevention,” said Brian Ross, president and CEO of Experience Columbus and an alumnus of Ohio State’s Hospitality Management program.

“This information is of the utmost importance to keeping the city’s 43 million annual visitors and 2 million-plus residents safe and healthy.”

CloroxPro, a company that makes cleaning products for businesses, hospitals and schools, provided support to help create and launch the course.

“Cleaning and disinfecting have always played an important role in overall public health,” said Doe Kley, a senior infection preventionist in the CloroxPro Healthcare division, who is a content expert for Ohio State’s Hospitality Management program and supported development of the course.

“Better understanding of the science of infection prevention enables businesses to implement effective long-term plans to reduce the spread of many pathogens in addition to COVID-19.”

The course consists of the following:

  • Video 1: Introduction to Infection Prevention in Public Spaces
  • Video 2: Where Do Infectious Agents Hide
  • Video 3: Transmission of Diseases
  • Video 4: Cleaning, Disinfection, Product Selection

Infection Prevention 101 for Public Spaces” is available on the university’s ScarletCanvas platform.

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