All UC Davis Employees Eligible for COVID-19 Vaccine | Students on April 15: Learn more

Hand Sanitization

Image of hand sanitization.

Practicing good hand hygiene is an important preventative action in the effort to slow the spread of COVID-19. Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing. If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. UC Davis has temporary and permanent hand hygiene stations across campus in critical locations, which can be found on the COVID-19 Resources digital map.

Type Soap and Water Alcohol-Based Hand Sanitizer
When to Use
  • After entering from outside.
  • Before and after eating.
  • After using the restroom.
  • After taking out or touching garbage.
  • After blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
  • When your hands are visibly dirty or greasy.
  • After entering a building if a washroom is not immediately available.
  • After coming in contact with high-touch surfaces and/or equipment if a washroom is not immediately available.
  • After blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
  • Do not use hand sanitizer if your hands are visibly dirty, wash with soap and water instead.
How to Use
  • Wet your hands with clean, running water then apply the soap.
  • Lather your hands front and back, between your fingers and under your nails.
  • Scrub for at least 20 seconds.
  • Rinse under running water.
  • Dry using a clean towel or air dry.
  • Make sure it contains at least 60% alcohol.
  • Use enough to cover your hands completely
  • Rub your hands together until they feel dry.
  • Do not rinse or wipe off before it is dry.

Top Tips

Worksite Planners

When completing your worksite plans, consider areas where access to alcohol-based hand sanitizers could be helpful, for example a conference room, reception area, copy rooms or common areas where sinks are not located nearby. Worksite planners can email us if they need additional guidance.


Hand sanitization supplies are currently available via AggieBuy in a variety of sizes. Learn more about purchasing limited quantities of supplies and PPE at no cost to your department.


In a typical office setting, there are differences to consider when deciding whether to wash or use a hand sanitizer. Soap and water work to remove all types of germs from hands, while sanitizer acts by killing certain germs on the skin. Although alcohol-based hand sanitizers can quickly reduce the number of germs in many situations, they should ideally only be used when access to a soap and water is limited.