Health
71% Ugandans do not wash their hands after visiting toiletsPublish Date: Feb 19, 2014
71% Ugandans do not wash their hands after visiting toilets
  • mail
  • img
The Minister of Health Ruhakana Rugunda (L) Regional Manger Water for People Gordon Mumbo (C)and the representative for Water and Sanitation for the Urban Andy Narnarracott (R) shares a moment during a conference on Sanitation at Hotel Africana. Picture by Wilfred Sanya
newvision

By John Agaba and Sharon Kembabazi

Out of every 10 people in Uganda, only three wash their hands after visiting the toilet, cleaning the baby’s bottom and before eating, health minister Ruhakana Rugunda, has said.
 
Rugunda said this eating-without-washing-hands character after visiting the toilet is a time bomb waiting to explode.
 
He said the poor hygiene practices were responsible for many preventable disease in the country, among others, dysentery, cholera, diarrhea, and Hepatitis E “that continue to afflict our people.”  
 
Uganda has had its share of these preventable diseases, the notable ones being dysentery and cholera. Last month, the death toll of the liver infection, Hepatitis E, hit 15 in Napak district.
 
“But most of these diseases are preventable. It is about the hygiene,” said Rugunda. “About 30% of Ugandans have no adequate sanitation facility while 71% do not wash their hands after using a latrine, cleaning the baby’s bottom or before eating.” 
 
“Studies have shown that washing hands with soap after using a latrine, cleaning the baby’s bottom or before eating reduces incidence of diarrhoea by 47% and Acute Respiratory Infections by 30%,” he added
 
This was during the East and Southern Africa conference on sanitation at the Kampala Serena Hotel Tuesday.
 
The conference was organized by Water for People and the IRC International Water and Sanitation Centre. 
 
 Regional Technical Director WaterAid Uganda Frank Musinguzi (L) Country Director of IRC International Water a sanitation  (C) Jane Nabunnya and the Executive Director Uganda Water and Sanitation NGO Doreen Wandera interacting during a conference on sanitation.Picture by Wilfred Sanya
 
Rugunda said hand-washing was a better option for disease prevention than any single vaccine. Poor sanitation is a factor in child malnutrition, causing stunting and poor cognitive development of children which later affects their academic performance. 
 
He said lack of sanitation contributes to about 10% of the global disease burden, caused by diarrheal diseases.
 
Related articles
 

The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact digital@newvision.co.ug

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
Japanese women are world
Japanese men's life expectancy rose above 80 for the first time in 2013, but was still several years below that of their female counterparts....
Ebola discoverer says would sit next to victim
The scientist who helped discover the Ebola virus says he would happily sit next to an infected person on a train....
MPs, CSOs want  Primary Health Care funding increased
MPs and Civil society organizations (CSOs) are demanding for an additional funding of Sh39billion to facilitate health centers II, III and IVs....
Non communicable diseases are a big threat
Emily Katarikawe, the Uganda Health Marketing Group (UHMG) managing director has described non-communicable diseases — that include, among others, cancer and hypertension — as the new problem threatening humanity the world over that needs “immediate” attention....
Male circumcision lowers HIV risk for women
A campaign to promote male circumcision to prevent AIDS infection also indirectly benefits women, a study shows....
Doctors remove 232 teeth from boy
Doctors in a hospital in India have removed as many as 232 teeth from the mouth of a 17-year-old boy....
Is Uganda prepared to effectively tackle an Ebola Outbreak?
Yes
No
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter