October 15 is Global Handwashing Day; we should know that our hygiene is in our hands. We dedicate the day to increasing awareness about the importance of hand hygiene. Handwashing with soap can dramatically reduce the risk of many infections like pneumonia and diarrhea. It also helps prevent the spread of other infections and viruses, including influenza and COVID-19.
When hand-washing with soap is practiced at key moments, such as after using the toilet or before eating, it can dramatically reduce the risk of many infections like Pneumonia and diarrhea which can cause serious illness and death. Handwashing with soap also helps prevent the spread of other infections and viruses including influenza and COVID-19.
Hand washing is a traditional method followed across generations before eating and upon entering the home from outside. With scientific evidence on the effectiveness of handwashing taking the centre stage during the pandemic the hand hygiene as a single factor in preventing the spread of the deadly COVID, the infection has become a key regulation today. Handwashing has been and will continue to be one of the most effective ways to stay safe during the COVID-19 pandemic and is by far one of the most important behaviors to adopt for a healthy life.
Access to WASH services and information alone is not enough to shift human behavior; individuals must be convinced that they have a vital role to play, and they require frequent reminders to stay motivated and keep up the behaviors that protect themselves and others from disease.
The health care facility is by far the most regulated area in terms of delivering 100 percent compliance towards hand washing and hand hygiene. There are regulatory, auditory, and quality standards for handwashing across the health care system that makes hand washing a defacto practice among health care workers.
Being an anesthetist I advocate and witness a high level of perfection in handwashing in Operation Theatres to prevent infections during surgeries. When we extrapolate this proven technique to the community we get prevention of disease transmission at the best.
The handwashing technique should be taught from the toddler age so that it becomes a standard and custom in itself. We at our hospital take the social responsibility of teaching the technique during our school visits.
The 2021 Global Handwashing Day theme is “Our Future is at Hand – Let’s Move Forward Together.”
Dr. Dhenesh R
Deputy Medical Administrator
Dr. Mehta’s Hospitals.