Introduction to Hand Hygiene
Why is hand hygiene so important?
The most common way germs are spread is by people's hands. Germs
are often harmless but they can also cause illnesses such as colds,
flu, and tummy bugs.
Washing your hands properly with soap and warm water is the
single most important thing you can do to help reduce the
spread of infections and help protect you, your family and
those around you.
It is vitally important that all children are made aware of the
importance and benefits of washing their hands
Encouraging children to wash their hands at appropriate times
will help to ensure that this practice becomes a lifelong
Materials were developed for children for use in primary schools
and nurseries and were distributed in the Autumn of 2007.
A European wide educational resource - e-bug is also available
for use for school age children for both classroom and home
use. It makes learning about organisms and the spread,
prevention and treatment of infection fun.
For those people who care for friends or relatives who are
unable to look after themselves, it is equally important that
handwashing techniques are applied at the appropriate times.
This helps to significantly reduce the risk of passing on an
infection to someone who could be more susceptible to infection
because of their existing condition.
Visiting a friend or relative in Hospital
When visiting a friend or relative in hospital or other
environment where healthcare is provided, it is important to ensure
that you clean your hands in order to help prevent the spread of
For more information to help prevent the spread of infection:
Remember - Alcohol based hand rubs are provided in every major
hospital in Scotland.