Access to Waterless Hand Sanitizer Improves Student Hand Hygiene Behavior

August 7, 2013 · 0 comments

Access to Waterless Hand Sanitizer Improves Student Hand Hygiene Behavior in Primary Schools in Nairobi, Kenya.  Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2013 Jul 8.

Pickering AJ, Davis J, Blum AG, Scalmanini J, Oyier B, Okoth G, Breiman RF, Ram PK.
Civil and Environmental Engineering and Woods Institute for the Environment, Stanford University, Stanford, California; Kenya Medical Research Institute, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention-Kenya, Nairobi, Kenya; University at Buffalo, State University of New York, Buffalo, New York.

Abstract – Handwashing is difficult in settings with limited resources and water access. In primary schools within urban Kibera, Kenya, we investigated the impact of providing waterless hand sanitizer on student hand hygiene behavior. Two schools received a waterless hand sanitizer intervention, two schools received a handwashing with soap intervention, and two schools received no intervention. Hand cleaning after toileting was 82% at sanitizer schools (N = 2,507 events), 38% at soap schools (N = 3,429), and 37% at control schools (N = 2,797), which was measured by structured observation over 2 months. Students at sanitizer schools were 23% less likely to have observed rhinorrhea than control students (P = 0.02); reductions in student-reported gastrointestinal and respiratory illness symptoms were not statistically significant. Providing waterless handsanitizer markedly increased student hand cleaning after toilet use, whereas the soap intervention did not. Waterless hand sanitizer may be a promising option to improve student hand cleansing behavior, particularly in schools with limited water access.
PMID: 23836575 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] Free full text
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