In addition to General and Operational Requirements

Before the Service:

  • Client’s nails must be examined for discolouration.
  • If yellow-green or other discolourations occur, do not provide service. Advise the client to see a doctor.
  • Do not treat a client who might have nail mould or fungus.

Remember: You do not have to see blood or body fluids on instruments for an infection to occur.

Nail Service Equipment:

  • All reusable nail service equipment and instruments such as metal, crystal, stainless steel files, reusable drill bits, clippers, nippers, and brushes, must be cleaned and disinfected (intermediate to high level) between clients.
  • Razor blades must be pre-packaged and single-use.
  • Discard razor blades immediately after use in an approved sharps container.
  • Approved sharps containers must be located in the area that the sharps item is used.
  • Equipment and instruments that cannot be properly cleaned and disinfected between clients are single-use such as foam or sponge core buffer blocks and files, Hindu stones, pumice stones, and sanding bands.
  • Use of client kits, including the workers’ items, must be discussed with the Public Health Inspector for proper management such as named containers, appropriate type of items, and change schedule.
  • Foot files must be cleaned with soap and water using a brush and then disinfected using an intermediate to high level disinfectant between clients.
  • “Ultraviolet light sterilizers” are not approved for sterilization. These units may be used to store cleaned and disinfected instruments.

Re-circulating Foot Baths and Spas

In addition to General and Operational Requirements

Clients who have open cuts on their legs should not use the foot bath

Several mycobacterial outbreaks have been linked to the improper cleaning and disinfecting of re-circulating foot baths and spas.

To prevent infections, the following steps must be followed:

Between clients:

  • Drain the foot bath of all water.
  • Fill the foot bath with detergent and water to above the water line and circulate the solution and clean the tub with a cleaning brush.
  • Empty the cleaning solution.
  • Fill the foot bath with clean water and circulate the rinse water.
  • Empty the rinse water.
  • Fill the foot bath with an intermediate level disinfectant (example is 1:50 bleach solution) and circulate the solution, then let sit for at least 10 minutes.

NOTE: A typical foot bath contains 20 litres of water. To achieve a 1:50 bleach solution, use 20 litres of water and 404 millilitre. of bleach (approximately the volume of a small drinking water bottle).

At the end of the day:

  • Drain the foot bath of all water.
  • Remove the recirculation screen covers from the unit.
  • Remove any debris collected.
  • Clean the screen thoroughly with soap and water.
  • Rinse with clean water.
  • Put screen covers back on unit.
  • Fill the foot bath with detergent and water to above the water line and circulate the solution.
  • Empty the cleaning solution.
  • Fill the foot bath with clean water and circulate the rinse water.
  • Empty the rinse water.
  • Fill the foot bath with an intermediate level disinfectant and circulate the solution, then let sit for at least 10 minutes.

If a disinfectant other than bleach is used, it must be effective against mycobacteria and be used following the manufacturers’ instructions regarding concentration and contact time in order to kill mycobacteria.

If a foot bath without a recirculation system is used, then it must be cleaned and then disinfected with an intermediate level disinfectant between clients. Alternatively, use a new plastic disposable liner for each client.

Watch the video How to Clean a Footbath for instructions.

Source: Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, Infection Prevention and Control Best Practices for Personal Services Settings, January 2009

March 2016