Stories - Cultural & Leisure -
Skip to main content


Secret of handwashing

Handwashing simply means getting your hands wet under tap water, doesn’t it? Well, yes and no. Handwashing can be a matter of profession when you take it seriously. Basically there are two ways of securing hand hygiene: one by liquid soap and water, and the other by alcohol-based hand-rub. With liquid soap and water It is advised to clean hands with liquid soap and water when hands are visibly dirty or visibly soiled with blood and body fluid, after using the toilet or changing the diapers. Steps:(i) Wet hands under running water.(ii) Apply liquid soap and rub hands together to make a soapy lather.(iii) Away from the running water, rub hands according to the 7 steps of hand hygiene technique for at least 20 seconds. Do not rinse off the soap while rubbing.(iv) Rinse hands thoroughly under running water.(v) Dry hands thoroughly with either a clean cotton towel or a paper towel.(vi) The cleaned hands should not touch the water tap directly again. For example: using a paper towel to wrap the faucet before turn it off. With alcohol-based handrub When hands are not visibly soiled, hand hygiene with 70-80% alcohol-based handrub is also an effective alternative. (Always check the expiry date before purchasing and using alcohol-based handrub.) Steps:(i) Apply a palmful of alcohol-based handrub to cover all surfaces of the hands. Rub hands according to the 7 steps of hand hygiene technique for at least 20 seconds until the hands are dry. There are three principles to note if you would like to be an expert of hand hygiene: Point 1:Rub hands with 7 stepsThat is the seven parts of your hand, i.e. Palms > Back of hands > Between fingers > Back of fingers > Thumbs > Finger tips > Wrists.Point 2:Rub hands at least 20 secondsPoint 3:Reminding Each Other to Keep Hands Clean Before you are ready to be a hand hygiene master, remember to always clean your hands in the following circumstances: (a) Before & after touching eyes, nose and mouth;(b) Before eating & preparing food;(c) After using the toilet;(d) When hands are contaminated by respiratory secretions, e.g. aftercoughing or sneezing;(e) After changing diapers or handling soiled items from children orthe sick;(f) After touching animals, poultry or their droppings;(g) After handling garbage;(h) After touching public installations or equipment, such as escalator handrails, elevator control panels or door knobs;(i) Before and after visiting hospitals, residential care homes or caring for the sick; and last but not least, "Any time you find your hands dirty."

Cultural & Leisure