World Hand Hygiene Day observed on May 5, annually emphasizes the need of maintaining clean hands for maintaining better health conditions. This year, the theme for World Hand Hygiene Day is  ‘health care quality and safety climate or culture,’ mainly focuses on recognizing that we can add to a facility's climate or culture of safety and quality through cleaning our hands but also that a strong quality and safety culture will directly encourage people to clean hands at the right times and with the right products. The Covid-19 pandemic that has been gripping the world for more than 2 years now, has taught us the importance of hand hygiene like never before, even as the usage of hand sanitizers and frequent hand washing has become a way of life.
WHDD main image

In India, a larger percentage of foodborne illness outbreaks occur due to germ-infested hands. Up to eighty percent of communicable diseases are transferred by touch and with proper handwashing, one can also reduce respiratory infections, colds, flus and diarrhoea cases by fifty percent.

Read More: Diarrhoea: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

Hand Hygiene Facts That Might Surprise You

Only forty percent of people wash their hands before eating food. Always wash your hands before eating food to avoid the risk of illness or disease

In a span of one day, one germ resting on your hand can multiply many million times. Practice good hand hygiene to stop this staggering reproduction

Damp hands have more bacteria than well-dried hands. Usage of tissues or hand dryers to dry your hands can reduce this count manifold times.

It takes a whole 60 seconds for a proper hand wash. Make sure you spend that time washing your hands with soap and water to prevent spreading harmful germs.

On average, a person touches his face up to fifteen times per hour after coming in touch with millions of bacteria. The millions could be as huge as 5 to 7 million per day. If that doesn't scare you enough, here is another fact. An individual comes in contact with more than a hundred surfaces every day, exposing you to about two to three million germs!

Due to an unhygienic school environment, children get infected with cold and flus quite often. To reduce this number, sufficient school hygiene facilities are required.

Follow These Steps To Wash Your Hands Properly:

  • Use clean, preferably running water to wet your hands
  • Apply normal soap or an alcohol-based disinfectant that contains more than sixty percent of alcohol
  • Lather and rub your hands ensuring to scrub all surfaces of your hands, fingertips, nails and even wrists for at least 20 seconds
  • Rinse your hands thoroughly with clean water
  • Dry with a clean towel or let them air-dry
  • Use a towel or a tissue to turn off the tap knob


As we know, handwashing with basic soap and water is an extremely effective way to prevent pathogen-borne diseases and save many lives, it is never too late to start practicing hand hygiene. By working together on increasing awareness and understanding of the importance of handwashing, there is a great chance that all kinds of water and pathogen-borne illness can be minimized and hopefully eliminated in the future.