Why Leon is calling on more hygienic telephones

23/06/2009 - 00:00
During the past year many business including offices, restaurants, hotels and the healthcare sectors have continued to come under pressure as they face a unique threat to both their consumers and commercial interests from microbial sources – for example MRSA and similar infections currently cost the NHS more than £1 billion a year.

Outside of healthcare, work environments are also places of high risk as many of the everyday pieces of equipment users come in to contact with including desk telephones and computer keyboards are often shared equipment and the perfect environment for bacteria and viruses to grow and linger. These become stubbornly resistant to disinfectants and cleaning agents. Restaurant chain Leon was opened four years ago in Carnaby Street, London by Chef Allegra McEvedy, along with friends Henry Dimbleby and John Vincent. Dedicated to providing not just healthy fast food to its customers, Leon managers are aware that providing the cleanest and safest environment for its staff is also paramount. Aware of the potential risk posed by bacteria harbouring in traditional office equipment's hard to clean surfaces Leon made the forward thinking decision to install Doro EasyClean phones. Doro, a Swedish Consumer Electronics Manufacturer, supplied Leon Restaurant, Spitalfields London with phones from its EasyClean range – the aub200h+sa. Designed on the premise that many of the day-to-day bacteria that users are exposed to live on their phones and settle in the multiple crevasses, Doro countered this by creating a simple and effective two line defence. Firstly, the high gloss, easy wipe surface and membrane keypad helps to suppress the growth of bacteria by incorporating fewer gaps in the overall design of the telephone. The phone has a completely sealed barrier that prevents water from getting into any hard-to-clean areas, allowing it to be sprayed clean without the risk of damaging any of the electronics. In addition a magnetic 'hook switch' further prevents the migration of germs by cutting out one of the key locations bacteria would traditionally reside – under the receiver hook. The telephones second line of defence comes in the form of a built-in anti-microbial silver-based compound additive known as Polygiene. The additive is built in to all of the plastic and curly cord, providing a permanent solution which is active 24 hours a day. Leon, Spitalfields installed the Doro handsets into the restaurant's office. The phones were positioned in areas that allow access to both the kitchen and the management teams on a daily basis. Although the telephones had been vigorously cleaned on a weekly basis, the previous office phones would often appear unclean. With many of the staff occasionally eating lunch at their desks, many would opt to clean their own phones with paper towels and telephone antibacterial wet wipes and found that the specially designed membrane keypad was an effective way of keeping built in grime to a minimum. Restaurant manager Nicky commented on the innovation: "The Doro EasyClean phones have been a positive addition to the business. With their unique design, not only are the phones cleaner, they have actually encouraged staff to be more proactive with cleaning and aware of their surroundings within the workplace. It's great to see companies like Doro creating appliances that mean people actively do something to avoid infection. It is one of Leon's top priorities to keep staff and customers healthy and assist the battle against the spread of germs in the workplace."

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