Proper hand washing at the proper times could reduce diarrhea illnesses by a third and respiratory illnesses by almost a fifth according to multiple research reports.
While many of those illnesses are among residents of underdeveloped countries, many cases of norovirus and other foodborne illnesses, as well as colds and flu, in the U.S. could be avoided every day if more people practiced better hand hygiene.
Global Handwashing Day is a way to support a global and local culture of handwashing with soap, shine a spotlight on the state of handwashing in each country, and raise awareness about the benefits of handwashing with soap.
Since 2008, Global Handwashing Day has been celebrated annually on Oct. 15 worldwide. The Global Public-Private Partnership for Handwashing with Soap founded Global Handwashing Day and encourages school children, teachers and families to get involved.
Although people around the world clean their hands with water, many do not use soap because it can be less accessible in developing countries. Even when soap is available, it might be reserved primarily for laundry and bathing instead of for handwashing.
In most parts of the United States, the availability of soap and running water is not a problem, yet effective hand washing is not an automatic behavior.
For parents, child care providers and educators, the challenge of instilling this life-saving behavior can be complicated by the dreaded “Why” question when they are describing the five steps to effective handwashing. The CDC has the answers you’ve been seeking