Washing hands with soap and water is one way to prevent COVID-19, but the reality is that millions of people have no way of doing it.
This pandemic has reminded us that out of five people, and only three have a place to wash their hands, these data were released by the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).
While COVID-19 continues to advance throughout the world, UNICEF emphasizes that it is very important to wash your hands, as this is a preventive measure to stop contagion. In addition, it calls for increased efforts to give more people access to this basic public health infrastructure.
Sanjay Wijesekera, UNICEF Program Director, said: “Washing your hands with soap and water is one of the most effective and cheapest things you can do to protect yourself and others against the coronavirus, as well as other infectious diseases. However, for millions, even something so basic is out of reach.”
The director also added that it is very important for people to know what measures to take to be able to stay safe and their families. While efforts continue to make sanitation and basic hygiene available to everyone.
THE ALARMING REALITY
The data provided by UNICEF is alarming. An estimated 40% of the world’s population does not have a place to wash their hands with soap and water in their homes. This represents almost three-quarters of the people who live in the least developed countries and lack basic services.
It was also disclosed that around 16% of medical facilities do not have a place for patients to wash their hands. In addition, 47% of schools do not have adequate places for around 900 million children to wash their hands with soap and water.
THE MOST AFFECTED ARE DEVELOPING COUNTRIES
According to data provided by UNICEF, 258 million people, or 63% in Africa, do not have access to wash their hands. In Asia, around 153 million people lack the ability to wash their hands at home. In the Philippines, 41 million people do not have access to this type of facility either.
HOW TO WASH YOUR HANDS?
The reality is that washing your hands is one of the ways to protect yourself from continuing to spread COVID-19 and other infections that can threaten our health. To continue to slow down the spread of this virus, UNICEF reminds everyone of the best way to do it:
1- Wet your hands with clean water.
2- Apply enough soap to generate foam and cover both hands.
3- Rub the surfaces of both hands, including the back, between the fingers and under the nails for more than 20 seconds.
4- Rinse both sides with plenty of water.
5- Dry your hands with a disposable towel or a clean cloth.