Global handwashing day: Avenue to promote healthier lifestyle habits

DPI, Guyana, Monday, October 15, 2018

Today, October 15 is Global Handwashing Day and it provides an opportunity to design, test, and replicate creative ways to encourage people to wash their hands with soap at critical times. For 2018, the theme under which this day is being observed is ‘Clean Hands – A Recipe for Health’.

This global advocacy day is dedicated to increasing awareness and understanding of the importance of handwashing with soap as an effective and affordable way to prevent diseases and save lives.

Handwashing is an important part of keeping food safe, preventing illnesses, and helping children grow strong. This year’s theme focuses on the links between handwashing and food – including food hygiene and nutrition.

In Guyana, the Ministry of Public Health continually seeks to ensure that the faucets in all their health facilities provide potable water so staff can wash their hands at important intervals. Further, persons working in the food industry are also encouraged to wash their hands regularly for purposes of environmental health and food safety.

Here are a few ways persons can make a difference this Global Handwashing Day:

  • Wash your hands with soap at critical times, especially before eating, cooking, or feeding others.
  • Practice good handwashing behaviour, and remind or help others to always wash their hands before eating.
  • Make handwashing part of your family meals. Establish places to wash your hands in the household, in your community, in schools, workplaces, and in health facilities.
  • Promote effective handwashing behaviour change in research, policy, programmes, and advocacy.

By: Delicia Haynes.

Image: Giovanni Gajie.

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Coronavirus disease spreads primarily through contact with an infected person when they cough or sneeze. It also spreads when a person touches a surface or object that has the virus on it, then touches their eyes, nose, or mouth. We urge citizens to practice good hygiene and social or physical distancing also adhere to the guidelines provided by the Ministry of Health, Guyana.