How clean is your office?

Posted at 10:50 PM, Feb 22, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-22 23:49:10-05

E-coli and bacteria that could cause staph infection were found in germ swab samples at several locations at NewsChannel 5 and the Palm Beach County government building.

The discoveries might have you thinking twice about the cleanliness of your office.

Dr. Abdul Naim of Capzer Pharmaceuticals helped perform the swab testing for 8 places you might see in your office space every day. "Seeing this kind of levels of these bacterias in common places was really kind of surprising to us."

After we tested WPTV and the government building some of our results confirmed what many would think; restroom door handles in both buildings had some of the highest bacteria counts.

And then, something very small revealed a big surprise. The pen used by county employees to sign out newspapers every day had traces of e-coli. A NewsChannel 5 women's restroom door handle popped positive for e-coli as well.

"You would think the handle coming out would be clean because you wash your hands but again, it’s surprising results," said Lisa Fiedor, a microbiologist with Capzer Pharmaceuticals.

We found staphylococcus, which can cause staph infection, in the NewsChannel 5 front door handle and in two spots in our men’s restroom.

Staphylococcus was also found in the county building first floor water fountain and the County Appraiser’s entrance door handle also showed staph.

Staphylococcus is something microscopic that could turn serious.

"If you don't take care of properly, you can end up in the hospital and it could get to your organs,” Fiedor said.

A surprising result came from the NewsChannel 5 break-room coffee machine, which had one of the highest levels of bacteria.

Dodging these germs takes extra care especially in flu season. "Especially in the cold season, don't touch your nose, after you touch something, a door. Always a good idea to wash your hands," Dr. Naim said.