In an attempt to ensure prevention of hospital and community acquired infections, the Federal Medical Centre, Lokoja, Kogi State capital last week joined the global community in raising awareness on the significance of hand washing, especially among healthcare providers.
May 5th every year is set aside by the World Health Organisation(WHO) to deepen the consciousness on hand hygiene as an effective strategy in the fight against infectious diseases.
The event, a facility- based awareness, also expected to spread to the communities, has as targets, health workers who stands the risk of being infected as well as infecting their patients and family members while discharging their responsibilities.
During the awareness programme held at its premises, Head of Community Health and Focal Person, Infectious Diseases Control, Federal Medical Centre, Lokoja, Dr (Mrs) Adesanya Abimbola, revealed that the focus of the event was to generally, create a culture of hand washing.
According to her, “ as a health worker, before you attend to a patient you are expected to wash your hands, and also do the same thing after attending to a patient. It has been discovered that hand hygiene greatly reduces infections”.
She maintained, “ hand washing helps protect health workers and patients from hospital and community acquired infections. The Nigerian Centre for Disease Control(NCDC) is mandating every health facility to replicate this as a means of protecting the health workers and patients from infections”.
With the theme: Unite for Safety- Clean Your Hands, Dr Adesanya said hand washing helps prevent against diseases such as; Lassa fever, Measles, Cholera and Diarrhoea as well as other diseases that causes droplets on the surface.
In a remark, Chief Medical Director of the hospital, Dr Babatunde Alabi, stressed the need for habitual washing of hand, saying it should be a personal principle, and not until there is outbreaks of epidemic or pandemic.
Accompanied to the event by other top management staff of the hospital, Dr Alabi decried the rate of infections traceable to poor hand hygiene, noting that, “ hand washing is a first line of defence for the health workers”.