The World Hand Hygiene Day, marked annually every 5th of May, is set to raise awareness about the importance of hand washing towards preventing spread of disease and also highlighting effective hand hygiene as a tool for infection prevention and control across communities globally.
This year, the Nigerian Medical Student’s Association (NiMSA) under the leadership of Clement Skills Egba (a final year medical student from Jos University Medical Student Association – JUMSA) commemorated the World hand hygiene day in collaboration with various medical student associations across Nigeria.
In partnership with the 2sure brand under Seven-Up Bottling Company and efforts from other offices, such as NiMSA Technical officer for WASH (water and sanitation hygiene), Directorate of Medical Outreach Program, Technical officer for Infectious Diseases and Control, the multiple world hand hygiene day projects were successfully executed across different institutions and environment in the nation.
Some activities of the projects included community sensitization through schools and markets on proper hygiene, techniques on hand washing with the distribution of free hand hygiene materials to participants i.e., sure liquid hand wash, hand sanitizer, antibacterial soap etc.
Furthermore, in preparation for this nationwide sensitization project, the partner company – 2sure – made available about 16,000 packs of their hygiene products (such as handwash, antibacterial soap and sanitizer) and other logistic items needed (i.e., performance stage, canopies, banners) to the implementing medical student associations across the country.
In Lagos, the representative of Association of Medical Student University of Lagos (AMSUL), named Hafsat I. Inuwa, facilitated the execution of this sensitization project in different communities of the state. Which include UNILAG Staff school, Yaba; Ojuwoye Market, Mushin; Sarikin Palace, Idiaraba and other communities within the College of Medicine, University of Lagos (CMUL) and Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH) environment.
Speaking with the AMSUL representative, she highlighted the impact of the project, stating that, “the Idiaraba community is highly populated with northerners, refugees and skilful workers who work for survival and care less about hygiene… Over a period of 2 consecutive days, with the aid of our volunteers and stakeholders, this project was successfully able to drive hand hygiene sensitization among this peculiar population to improve their hygiene awareness for health”.
In conclusion, she commended, “I am glad to be a part of this big national project. It was a delightful experience reaching out to those communities in need and I anticipate more impact accomplishment by our (medical students) association in the society”.