By Ryan McGreal
Published January 17, 2010
Hamilton's Department of Public Health has issued a warning for Hamilton barbers about reusing razors, after a barber was discovered re-using used razor blades to shave clients without proper cleaning and disinfection.
Public Health recommends against re-using razors between clients due to the risk of transferring blood-borne infections, like hepatitis B, hepatitis C and HIV. If barber does re-use a razor, they must ensure that the razors are properly cleaned and disinfected between uses.
According to Fiona Kouyoumdjian, MD MPH, of Public Health, the Department issued an order on January 15 to Vincent's Barber Shop "to require that they comply with infection control standards, specifically to ensure adequate cleaning and disinfection of any razors which they are reusing."
She added that Public Health is "also concerned that other barbershops are reusing razors without adequate cleaning and disinfection, or that other barbershops may have done so in the past."
Public Health performs routine inspections of barber shops at least once a year, or more frequently in response to specific concerns about unsafe practices.
While there have been no documented infections in Hamilton due to re-used barber shop razors, such diseases can go unnoticed in the absence of immediate symptoms. Many people who contract blood-borne diseases never determine how they contracted them.
Public Health advises members of the public to request that barbers use a new disposable razor blade.
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