A practice as simple as washing hands before going to and after leaving the bathroom or eating is ignored by 95% of the world’s population, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), which annually causes the death of about 3.5 million children under five years of age due to diarrhea and pneumonia.
For this reason, in 2008 the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) and WHO instituted World Handwashing Day, which aims to reduce the spread of communicable infectious diseases by simply using water and ham. If this habit takes root among the population, it is possible to reduce diarrhea deaths by about half and 25% of deaths from acute respiratory infections, as reported by the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM).
According to the head of water, sanitation and hygiene of Unicef, Sanjay Wijesekera, the incidence of diarrheal diseases could decrease up to 40% simply by washing your hands with soap and water, before and after using the bathroom or eating. By not performing this habit, people become a source of transmission of conditions.
For its part, the Department of Public Health of the Faculty of Medicine of the UNAM, said that it can not only cause gastrointestinal and respiratory problems, also hepatitis A, conjunctivitis or skin diseases, although to a lesser extent. If we bring viruses or bacteria in our hands, we can be a means of infection or spread some of these germs.
In the world, nine thousand people die every day from diarrheal and respiratory diseases related to poor hand hygiene. In Mexico, only 60% of adults and 34% of children do it daily, said university agency.
Hygiene in hospitals
Around the hospital environment, it is almost impossible to eliminate the risk of infections because germs are found everywhere. Although it also depends on the habits of doctors and health personnel, which prevents them from becoming a vector of these pathogens.
For example, nurses should wash their hands after reviewing a patient and so on with each patient, because they sometimes have contact with the skin and urine and if they do not wash their hands those bacteria are transmitted to another person.
However, this bad habit is not considered as serious and occurs in all social layers. Some people even consider it normal to prepare food without first washing their hands; It is also common that while the restaurant, restaurant and street stall staff attend the diners, they touch their faces, scratch, run their hands over their faces or hair.