Globally 3 billion people lack soap and water at home – WHO Boss

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, director-general of the World Health Organization (WHO), speaks at a press conference after the WHO emergency committee's meeting on the novel coronavirus in China at its headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, Jan. 22, 2020. (Xinhua/Liu Qu)
Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO)

The World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus on Monday said that around the world, less than two-thirds of health care facilities are equipped with hand hygiene stations, and 3 billion people lack soap and water at home.

“This is an old problem that requires new and vastly increased attention,” he said, adding that Tuesday is Hand Hygiene Day, “a reminder of the importance of clean hands for health workers and for all of us.”

Speaking at a virtual press conference from Geneva, the WHO chief stressed that for the fighting against COVID-19, to clean hands is one of the best and also one of the most basic tools.

“The simple act of cleaning hands can be the difference between life and death, and remains one of the most important public health measures for protecting individuals, families and communities against COVID-19 — and many other diseases,” he noted.

“If we are to stop COVID-19 or any other source of infection, and keep health workers safe, we must dramatically increase investments in soap, access to water, and alcohol-based hand rubs,” he added. Enditem

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