International project „Safe and effective cleaning in pandemic situation“



The opening meeting of the Erasmus+ project “ Safe and effective cleaning in pandemic situation“ took place in Tallinn from 24th to 25th January 2022.  

rahvusvaheline projekt

Cleaning is an activity that concerns all people, all buildings, all premises everywhere – someone is always cleaning. People’s health depends on cleanliness. The spread of the Sars-Cov-12 virus in the world has also increased the focus on cleaning. Disinfection has been widely presented in the media, even on streets and in other places. Disinfecting means the use of biocides, which pursuant to law should only be done by trained professionals. The WHO highlighted the biocides to be used and their exposure times in its guidelines. In reality, people used disinfectants in massive quantities without paying attention to the requirements for use or safety. At the same time, the use of disinfectants isn’t even necessary in many situations and conscious cleaning is enough. However, when dirty surfaces are cleaned, a disinfectant has almost no effect or is insufficient, while the use of a biocide poses a threat to health of the people in the room and to the emergence of resistance. Awareness is important, as the results of the use of a disinfectant aren’t visible to the naked eye. The use of disinfectants is not appropriate; for example, these products are used but in a manner that doesn’t destroy micro-organisms and damages health, surfaces, etc. It’s also expensive. When dirty surfaces are cleaned, the disinfectant has no effect or the effect is minimal. For example, a 20-year study was carried out in the University of Bergen, Norway, which covered 6000 people and concluded that the use of cleaning agents in spray bottles damages a person’s health as much as smoking 20 cigarettes per day (Household cleaners can be as bad as smoking for your lungs (sciencenorway.no)).  

The idea for the project was born in the first months of the pandemic. Working with various organisations on the topic of the development of domestic cleaning after seeing the things shown in the media, we saw overreacting and a lack of awareness. Puhastusekspert OÜ was also involved in the development of cleaning guidelines in Estonia by the Health Board. 

We soon realised that something had to be done and there was a lot of potential in teaching, developing and sharing information about cleaning to ensure that people’s health is not harmed and that cleaning has the desired effect. A single organisation cannot achieve this – cooperation is needed. The principles followed in finding partners were to only include 

highly professional and important partners, each of whom has a certain role. Due to the objective of the project, it’s important to process information in English, French and German. Therefore, we started looking for partners who speak the respective languages and are actively interested in making the world better in this field.  The competence of processing scientific research and analysis is important. Project leader Puhastusekspert OÜ has high-level international experience in cleaning and leading and partner in projects. In order to achieve good results, the project team consists of: – Propuhtaus, Finland – has extensive experience in cleaning research, preparation of books and articles on cleaning; – Tuula Suontamo Oy, Finland – PhD Tuula Suontamo has carried out numerous independent research projects and tests in the area of  a high-level scientific approach ; – IFPRA Normandie, France – has extensive experience in leading projects, including projects for improvement of cleaning in hospitals, – SVS, the Netherlands – has extensive experience in the development of professional cleaning, training and development of training literature.; – Rakvere Reaalgümnaasium – has experience in video production and social media marketing. They have video studio with necessary and modern technology (2 cameras, light, sound, software and hardware, etc. 

By carrying out effective information work, it is possible to make the working and living environment of even more people safer and healthier through conscious cleaning, while saving resources through unnecessary activities. The topic of the project concerns everyone, so it is important to bring the information not only to people involved in professional cleaning but also to disseminate it more widely, so that people can understand cleaning activities more objectively in the conditions of a pandemic. Getting real benefits from the project results depends on the successful dissemination work, not only in terms of the project results, but also in understanding the topic, raising general awareness. 

During project 3 years we carry out the following activities in the project:  

  • We will analyse cleaning instructions from at least 15 countries for cleaning under Covid-19 conditions, point out possible differences, study the differences between the instructions and the actual cleaning.  
  • We will analyse at least 30 scientific studies on cleaning in pandemic conditions. We pay special attention to the negative aspects of disinfection. 
  • We will make a summary of instructions, research that is easy to use in teaching, decision-making when planning cleaning and purchasing a cleaning service  
  • We will create a well-thought-out promotional video about the importance of conscious cleaning, which we want to reach to as many people as possible. 
  • We will make educational videos for cleaning five standard rooms in pandemic and normal conditions, using minimal resources to achieve the result.  
  • We will carry out science-based testing so that we can be sure that the proposed methods actually work to achieve sufficient purity. The study is largely led and conducted by Tuula Suontamo, PhD with long-term experience  
  • We will create an easy-to-use self-audit form, on the basis of which everyone can discover 10 critical places in cleaning, the cleanliness of which is important for preventing the spread of viruses.  

 Partners info: 








We hope that during the project and after that the aforementioned materials and results will be used by as many people as possible, we hope to bring the information to at least 200,000 people. We hope that this will result in a significant improvement in cleaning activities to ensure adequate hygiene and prevent the spread of viruses and diseases. We apply that the cleaning activities are conscious, remove dirt, including microbial dirt, which must not be in these rooms. We hope that disinfectants, ie biocides, are used consciously, safely and correctly and in places where there is a real need for them, based on the developed materials.  

In this way, we hope to avoid damage to human health, coating materials and unnecessary costs. 

 More information: