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Handwashing with soap may be more effective than any vaccine, says minister

Minister of Health, Professor Isaac Adewole, has said that washing the hands with soap can prevent transmission of variety of pathogens, as it may be more effective than any vaccine or hygiene practice.

Marketing Director, RB Nigeria, Aliza Leferink (right); Director, Child Development, Federal Ministry of Women Affairs, Mrs Jummai Mohammed; National Coordinator, Food Safety and Quality Programme, Fubara Chuku; Headmistress, LEA Model Primary School, Maitama, Mrs. Katherine Arron Rengkwar and others during the Global Handwashing Day in Abuja …yesterday.

Minister of Health, Professor Isaac Adewole, has said that washing the hands with soap can prevent transmission of variety of pathogens, as it may be more effective than any vaccine or hygiene practice.

This was made known in a speech presented at Dettol’s 2018 Global Handwashing Day event organised by Reckitt Benckiser (RB), in Abuja.He expressed appreciation to the efforts of the company in promoting good hygiene practices in Nigeria.

The minister, represented by Mr. Fubara Chuku, national coordinator, Food Safety and Quality Programme at the ministry, said: “This is a demonstration of your commitment to the cause of reducing disease transmission in the country and meeting the SDGs target.”

Since its inception a decade ago, communities and leaders worldwide have used the Global Handwashing Day, held on October 15, to echo and reinforce the call for improved hygiene practices.

General manager, RB West Africa, Mr. Dayanand Sriram, said: “We believe that it is important to inculcate good habits such as proper handwashing at an early age. A simple act of washing the hands with soap can prevent illnesses and arrest diarrhea-related deaths. This is why we are continuing with the tradition of driving habit change, and provision of needed infrastructure.”

He added that over the past seven years, the company had provided handwashing sites and educated over seven million children, parents and teachers about the importance of handwashing through the School Hygiene Programme, which is about proper handwashing and hygiene habits.

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