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New Course Teaches the Essentials of Stopping Viruses

Employers looking to stop the spread of COVID-19 have a new tool to improve employee safety, thanks to a new interactive professional education course from ACS Publications. “Chemistry in Practice: Reduce the Spread of Viruses,” debuted on Oct. 5, with two free modules on how viruses spread and the proper use of masks. The entire seven-part course will launch on Oct. 15.

The course was developed with valuable insights provided by advisors: Poonum Korpe, M.D., Assistant Scientist of Epidemiology at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health; Courtney Aldrich, Ph.D., University of Minnesota and Editor-in-Chief of ACS Infectious Diseases; KC Azavedo, RN, of Carolinas Medical Center; Jess Lewis, M.D., of Medical University in South Carolina; and Nouri Neamati, Ph.D., University of Michigan and Associate Editor of Journal of Medicinal Chemistry. The expert-designed course uses guidance from leading public health organizations, hospitals, and primary research. The topics included in the full course are:

  • How a Virus Spreads: Learn about viruses that cause respiratory infections, how a virus spreads, six factors about droplets, and what makes an outbreak severe.
  • Wearing and Caring for Masks: Understand how masks work, the effective wearing of masks, and caring for your mask properly. Access research from ACS Publications on fabric and layers of masks.
  • Effective Hand Hygiene: Evaluate if you really know how to wash your hands, plus how much soap you should use, which is most effective, how hand sanitizer works, and more.
  • Recommendations on Gloves and Face Shields: Find out when and if you should use gloves and face shields. Understand the difference between droplet transmission and indirect contact transmission.
  • Navigating Group Situations: In this lesson, you will evaluate the virus’s concentration in the air and the protective actions you might take. Understand your own risk and when to social distance with a risk-assessment calculator.
  • Cleaning and Disinfecting: Learn the three most common mistakes when using disinfectants. Understand how disinfectants work and what needs to be disinfected, plus access the CDC Decision Tree on cleaning and disinfecting surfaces.
  • How We Fight a Virus: Understand the difference between the body’s natural defense systems, vaccines, antivirals, and other treatments. Address frequently asked questions around herd immunity, safely developing vaccines, and testing.
  • Capstone: A Day in the Life: In a final self-assessment capstone module, learners will be evaluated on key takeaways and lessons learned. Upon completion, you will receive a Chemistry in Practice: Reduce the Spread of Viruses certificate.

Each module takes 15-20 minutes to complete, and they come bundled with a risk-assessment calculator and tip sheets.

Visit the course website to learn more about the course and sign up to receive free access to two course modules. Companies or institutions that wish to load the full course into their own learning management system (LMS) should contact institute@acs.org.

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