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Public Urged To Keep Hands Clean To Avoid Food Contamination

Eastern Regional Senior Medical Officer, Madam Hectoria Awekeya has advised the general public to maintain hand hygiene to avoid contracting diseases.

Madam Hectoria who spoke in an interview with Austin Ofori Addo during the Food Safety, Nutrition and Hygiene segment of the Rite Morning Ride on Tuesday said it was important to maintain hand hygiene to keep their hands clean from germs.

Hand washing is described as an easy, effective, and affordable protection against infections. It is said to save lives, especially when it is performed with soap.

People can protect themselves, their families, and communities through this method which requires just two items: soap and a small amount of water. But the benefits are huge.

Madam Hectoria said hands washing can be done through thoroughly washing hands with water, soap, sanitizers, etc.

The practice, she maintains, is key to avoid contamination of diseases as hand hygiene is now regarded as one of the most important elements of infection control activities.

“It is very important to wash our hands with soaps and sanitizers because using ordinary water to wash hands does not kill the germs but the soap and the sanitizers do kill the germs due to their chemical compositions,” she said.

The Eastern Regional Senior Medical Officer however discouraged the practice where many persons wash their hands in a common bowl of water, describing the practice as dangerous.

Many persons washing their hands in a common bowl of water is very dangerous which can lead to the spreading and contraction of diseases from other persons, she said.

Regular hands washing and at such crucial times as, after using the toilet or before contact with food, can greatly reduce the risk of diarrhoea and pneumonia, can cause serious illness and death.

It can reduce the risk of diarrhoea by 30 to 50 per cent. Regular hand wash with soap also helps to prevent spread of such other infections as influenza and Ebola.

The first global Hand Washing Day was held in 2008, when over 120 million children around the world washed their hands with soap in more than 70 countries.

Since then, community and national leaders have used the occasion to spread the word about hand-washing, building of sinks and tippy taps, as well as demonstrate the simplicity and value of clean hands.

The global Hand Washing Day is endorsed by a large number of governments, international institutions, and civil society organizations, non-Governmental organizations (NGOs), private companies and individuals.

However, health experts have noted that the reason many don’t wash their hands properly and regularly is due to lack of awareness and consciousness of its immense benefits.

Source; Prince Paul Amuzu/www.ritefmonline.org/princeamuzu667@gmail.com

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