Summit Medicine and Pediatrics’ Tip to Manage the COVID-19 Pandemic

TODAY’S TIP:  Proper Hand-washing Technique

We all understand the importance of hand-washing in preventing the spread of disease, in particular, the spread of COVID-19. However, it is quite rare to have had education and training in proper technique for hand-washing. This video produced by Babylon Health illustrates proper hand-washing technique

Here is a summary of hand-washing principles and steps:

  • Wash your hands with soap and warm water
  • Wash your hands for a minimum of 20 seconds
  • Wash your hands 15-20 times per day, and immediately after touching surfaces and objects that have not been cleaned or sanitized recently
  • Hand-washing Steps:
    • Wet your hands
    • Apply soap to your hands
    • Wash your palms together in a circular motion with fingers extended
    • Wash your fingers front-to-back in interlocking fashion; left-over-right, and right-over-left
    • Wash your palms together with interlocking fingers
    • Wash your fingers clasped and interlocked; left-over-right, and right-over-left
    • Wash your thumbs in grasped and circumferential fashion
    • Wash your palms separately with the fingers of the opposite hand
    • Wash your wrists in grasped and circumferential fashion
    • Rinse thoroughly under running water your wrists, hands and fingers
  • Dry your hands with a paper towel
  • Use the paper towel with which you dried your hands to turn off the water

It is imperative to apply proper hand-washing technique at all times. Take your time… do it correctly… and reduce your risk of suffering from and spreading to others illness and disease. Finally, we have several additional suggestions:

  • Since you will be washing your hands frequently, it is also imperative to apply emollients and lotions to your hands and wrists frequently so as to avoid excessive dryness and to maintain excellent health for the skin of your hands.
  • Keep your fingernails properly trimmed and cleaned at all times; bacteria and viral pathogens can hide easily under the fingernails, and are not always cleared, even with proper hand-washing technique.
  • Avoid using “forced air” hand-dryers to dry your hands after washing; such dryers can aerosolize particles and increase the risk of spread of illness and disease.

“It’s the little things that escape us which can endanger us. After all, the COVID-19 virus is very, very little in size.” — Dr. Mike

Summit Medicine and Pediatrics partners with healthcare professionals and organizations throughout the nation to inform and empower Americans to minimize their risk for COVID-19 infection.