BY GABRIEL OLAWALE
Hand washing is one of the most important and easiest ways to prevent infectious disease. Proper hand washing with soap has proved to be the first line of defense against the spread of many illnesses, from the common cold to more serious illnesses such as meningitis, bronchiolitis, influenza, hepatitis A, and most types of infectious diarrhoea.
Recent report from World Health Organisation had showed that hand hygiene practices led to reduction of infections caused by multidrug resistant bacteria in health facilities.
When hand hygiene is complied with in health facilities from 60 per cent to 90 per cent, there can be a 24 per cent reduction in Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, MRSA, acquisition.
To help spread this message, Procter & Gamble, makers of Safeguard soap embarked on an enlightenment campaign to educate families on importance of hygiene through proper hand washing. The drive which centres on basic hygienic practices among families is aimed at total family health.
Speaking in Lekki, Lagos, during the “Family Fun Fair” drive to step up family fitness , Public Health Physician, Dr. Nkechi Olalere noted that respiratory infections like pneumonia and diarrhoeal diseases have been found to cause about 25 per cent of death in children.
“This is where hand washing comes in. Research has shown that just with hand washing the incidence of these diseases can be cut by 50 per cent. That is why the message of hand washing with soap is worth repeating.”
Olalere, also known as “Dr Safeguard” disclosed that some times hands may appear to be clean but yet still carry germs because hands pick up micro-organisms in a number of ways. Washing and drying hands properly can help prevent the spread of the organisms that cause these diseases.
“That is why we call safeguard champion of family health because it is very important in promoting hygene and healthy living. After usage, if you don’t re-infect your self again it can stay there for the next 12 hours.”
Brand Communications Manager, Procter and Gamble Ayotomiwa Ajewole re-affirmed commitment to exploring means of increasing the health quota in the home.
“Safeguard is all about ensuring good health and safety from diseases. It is a family companion that cares about the total health of the home,” he said.