Regular hand washing ‘effective against germs’ - GulfToday

Regular hand washing ‘effective against germs’


Photo has been used for illustrative purposes.

Jamil Khan, Senior Reporter

Years of research have shown that regularly washing hands with soap and water, as advised by public health authorities, is highly effective against germs. The initial test results, conducted at the internationally accredited Microbac Laboratories, further contribute to the years of research, and shows that a liquid hand wash and an alcohol-based hand sanitiser gel, sold by Lifebuoy in Asia, Africa and the Middle East, can successfully inactivate the SARS-CoV-2 Coronavirus responsible for COVID-19.

In a press statement issued on Thursday, Dr Vibhav Sanzgiri, R&D Vice President for Skin Cleansing at Unilever, said: “The technology of these products, and how they work, is linked to the structure of the virus. Coronaviruses are enveloped viruses which contain an outer protective layer made of fatty molecules.

“The initial results provide scientific evidence that the products tested inactivate the COVID-19; this is done by disrupting the protective layer of the virus.”

Samir Singh, Global EVP, Skin Cleansing at Unilever said: “The uncertainty we continue to face in this global pandemic is challenging for all of us. As we wait for a vaccine to be developed, soap continues to play a crucial role in tackling the spread of the virus. Our hope is that this scientific testing will help reassure people and encourage even greater adoption of hand washing and good hygiene habits, at a time when it has never been more important.”

The soap like Lifebuoy runs the world’s largest behaviour change programme to encourage hand washing. In response to the global pandemic, the brand has embarked on a public service campaign to remind people that hand hygiene and using any soap brand can help reduce the spread of infections.

The brand has also donated over 20 million products, including soap, hand sanitisers and antibacterial wipes to various organisations and initiatives around the world.

As of May 5, the UAE has conducted 1.3 million coronavirus tests, which were done by hospitals, specialist health centres and 14 drive-through testing centres, according to WAM.

The number of people who recovered from the virus doubled in the past two weeks, jumping from 1,443 on April 21 to 3,153 on May 5, at an average of 122 cases per day.

The UAE is continuing its efforts to expand its scope of testing in all regions of the country, to ensure the early detection of those infected and isolate those they had contact with.

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