Public Health Communications Specialist
Ministry of Health/Social Development
Virgin Islands residents are urged to keep their hands clean at all times as the BVI Health Services Authority promotes Hand Hygiene Day observed on May 6.
The “Save Lives: Clean Your Hands” campaign is an initiative by the World Health Organization to support hand hygiene improvement globally.
Infection, Prevention & Control and Employee Health Manager, Mrs. Rosa Ravariere-Seaman said the day’s observance seeks to maintain a global profile on the importance of hand hygiene in a healthcare setting. She said hand hygiene is the cornerstone of infection prevention and when performed correctly, hand hygiene is the single most effective way to prevent the spread of communicable diseases and infections.
Mrs. Ravariere-Seaman said, “In healthcare, hand hygiene is required before and after contact with patients, their body substances or items contaminated by them, before and after performing invasive procedures, after assisting patients with personal care, before and after putting on and taking off gloves; before preparing, handling, serving or eating food or feeding a patient, after performing personal functions and when hands come into contact with secretions, excretions, blood or body fluids.”
The Employee Health Manager stated that the most critical times for hand washing are before preparing food and after going to the bathroom. She said 80 percent of all infectious diseases are transmitted by touch, fingernails and surrounding areas which habour the most microorganisms. Mrs. Ravariere-Seaman added that damp hands are 1,000 times more likely to spread bacteria than dry hands.
Persons can tune in to ZBVI on May 7 at 9:00 a.m. to hear more about the importance of hand hygiene from the Infection Prevention, Control and Employee Health Manager, Mrs. Rosa Ravariere-Seaman.
BVI Health Services Authority is committed to delivering excellent, compassionate, client-centered healthcare across the Territory.