How to Combat the Coronavirus with Proper Hand Washing

By Paul Riegler on 19 February 2020
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While hand washing has been a central component of personal hygiene for years, as well as a religious and cultural custom, the link between hand washing and health first appeared two centuries ago.

It wasn’t until Ignaz Semmelweis, a Hungarian doctor working at the Allgemeines Krankenhaus der Stadt Wien in Vienna, discovered that the incidence of peuerperal fever could be dramatically reduced by the use of hand disinfection in obstetrical clinics, that the medical community began to accept that hand washing would significantly reduce the mortality rate.

Hand washing as a practice to reduce infection was promoted by Florence Nightingale during the Crimean War, resulting in a reduction in the infection rate.

Needless to say, in the ensuing 130 years between the war and a series of foodborne outbreaks and healthcare-associated infections in the 1980s, not much happened until the Centers for Disease Control endorsed hand hygiene as a means of preventing the spread of infection.

Today, in the face of the coronavirus, also known as Covid-19, experts say that hand washing is the front line of defense against infection.

The World Health Organization said that people should wash their hands frequently with soap and water and the CDC says that “[H]and washing is one of the best ways to protect yourself and your family from getting sick.”

Simply following these six simple steps before and after eating or preparing food, using the toilet, tending a wound, and caring for someone who is ill, and after changing a diaper, blowing one’s nose, coughing, sneezing, touching a pet or pet waste, touching pet food, and touching garbage, will help you stay healthier.

1.)       Wet your hands with clean, running water, hot or cold, it doesn’t matter
2.)       Turn off the tap to save water and apply soap
3.)       Lather up by rubbing your hands together with the soap. This includes the back of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.
4.)       Scrub your hands for a minimum of 20 seconds, the duration of singing “Happy Birthday” twice.
5.)       Rinse your hands under clean, running water, hot or cold.
6.)       Dry your hands using a clean towel or let them air dry but do not use a forced-air hand dryer.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

Accura News

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