What is hand hygiene?
Hand hygiene is a way of cleaning one's hands that substantially reduces potential pathogens (harmful microorganisms) on the hands. Hand hygiene is considered a primary measure for reducing the risk of transmitting infection among people.
Hand hygiene procedures include the use of alcohol-based hand rubs (containing 60%–95% alcohol) and handwashing with soap and water.
Why hand hygiene is so important?
As recommended by CDC, handwashing with soap and water can reduce the amounts of all types of germs and chemicals on hands. In absence of soap and water, using a hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol can help to avoid getting sick and spreading germs to others.
What are the differences between handwashing and hand sanitizing?
There are various steps of handwashing recommended by recognized body or organization such World Health Organization (WHO), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Ministry of Health (MOH) as in Malaysia. Regardless how many steps are carried out, the objective is same which is to have a clean hands. Below are handwashing steps recommended by WHO, CDC and MOH.
Why each step of handwashing is important?
As mentioned earlier, handwashing is the best way of protecting ourselves and people around us from getting sick. Here is the best way of explaining why each steps of handwashing is important.
Hand sanitizing steps
Hand sanitizing is another type of hand hygiene which in absence of soap and water, people can rubbing their hands using alcohol-based hand sanitizer (contain at least 60% alcohol). Here are the correct steps of hand sanitizing.
Sources: CDC, WHO & MOH
Hand hygiene is a crucial part for determining the effectiveness of personal hygiene practices for the food handlers as they using 90% of their hands to prepare and serve foods.
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