Since the outbreak of Covid-19, the importance of washing your hands has become extremely important in everyday life. It can save your life and those of others. World Hand Hygiene Day 2021, on 5 May, celebrates the global campaign, SAVE LIVES: Clean Your Hands, by promoting the importance and improvement of hand hygiene across the world.
The World Health Organization (WHO) is calling on healthcare workers and facilities to focus on achieving effective hand hygiene at the point of care, where the patients, the healthcare workers and treatment centre all come into direct contact. Hand hygiene is the entrance door for preventing infection and increasing patient safety.
To prevent the transmission of infectious micro-organisms, it is essential that proper hand hygiene is observed. It is one of the simplest and most effective ways of preventing the spread of pathogens, such as the Covid-19 virus. There are five critical moments in the process: before touching a patients; before cleaning/aseptic procedure; after body fluid exposure; after touching a patient; and after touching the patient surroundings. In addition, the right technique and appropriate products, such as water and soap or alcohol-based gel, assure effective cleaning.
The campaign hopes to engage multiple audiences, to achieve effective hygiene according to the WHO multimodal hand hygiene improvement strategy and support for the implementation of the WHO 2020 recommendations for universal hand hygiene and WHO/UNICEF Hand Hygiene for All initiative in healthcare facilities.
Image credit: WHO