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Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2010 Feb;82(2):270-8. doi: 10.4269/ajtmh.2010.09-0220.

Efficacy of waterless hand hygiene compared with handwashing with soap: a field study in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.

Author information

1
Emmett Interdisciplinary Program in Environment and Resources, School of Earth Sciences and Civil and Environmental Engineering, and Woods Institute for the Environment, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305, USA. amyjanel@stanford.edu

Abstract

Effective handwashing with soap requires reliable access to water supplies. However, more than three billion persons do not have household-level access to piped water. This research addresses the challenge of improving hand hygiene within water-constrained environments. The antimicrobial efficacy of alcohol-based hand sanitizer, a waterless hand hygiene product, was evaluated and compared with handwashing with soap and water in field conditions in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. Hand sanitizer use by mothers resulted in 0.66 and 0.64 log reductions per hand of Escherichia coli and fecal streptococci, respectively. In comparison, handwashing with soap resulted in 0.50 and 0.25 log reductions per hand of E. coli and fecal streptococci, respectively. Hand sanitizer was significantly better than handwashing with respect to reduction in levels of fecal streptococci (P = 0.01). The feasibility and health impacts of promoting hand sanitizer as an alternative hand hygiene option for water-constrained environments should be assessed.

PMID:
20134005
PMCID:
PMC2813169
DOI:
10.4269/ajtmh.2010.09-0220
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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