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Coronavirus 2019: World Health Organization Introduces #SafeHands Challenge To Promote Hand Hygiene And Prevent COVID-19

From badminton player P. V. Sindhu, sand artist Sudarsan Pattnaik, to international footballers and artists, people across the globe have joined the World Health Organisation’s #SafeHands challenge to promote hand hygiene and prevent the spread of COVID-19

Coronavirus 2019: World Health Organization Introduces #SafeHands Challenge To Promote Hand Hygiene And Prevent COVID-19

New Delhi: The total number of confirmed novel coronavirus (COVID-19) cases in India has climbed up to 126 (as of March 17) of which 13 patients have recovered and have been discharged whereas three deaths – one each in Karnataka, Delhi and Maharashtra have been recorded. To contain the spread, morbidity and mortality due to coronavirus, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has proposed numerous interventions including the closure of all educational establishments, gyms, museums, which will be in effect till March 31. At this crucial juncture, when the risk of getting the virus is high, experts recommend hand washing as a basic step that needs to be followed to avoid the spread of coronavirus.

Also Read: Prime Minister Narendra Modi On Coronavirus: “Avoid Gatherings, Wash Your Hands Regularly And Help Prevent The Spread Of Virus”

To promote clean hands and instill the habit of washing hands with soap or alcohol-based rub, the World Health Organisation (WHO) that has declared the COVID-19 as a pandemic, launched the ‘Safe Hands Challenge’ on March 13.

In a two minute long video shared by WHO on Twitter, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organisation, gives a lesson on how to have clean and safe hands. Dr Tedros taught the right technique to wash hands in 11 steps and asked the world to take the WHO Safe Hands Challenge and show where and how you wash your hands.

Also Read: Coronavirus Outbreak: Government Issues Guidelines For Proper Mask Use To Combat COVID-19

Sharing his video of washing hands based on the steps recommended by WHO, Dr Tedros nominated over 20 people including actor Deepika Padukone, Priyanka Chopra, philanthropist Melinda Gates, Bill Gates, American singer-songwriter Lady Gaga and asked them “to take the #SafeHands challenge by sharing their video and calling on at least another three people to join us! Together, we can beat #COVID19!”

A bunch of nominees showed their support towards fighting coronavirus by taking the challenge. The latest entrant is actor Deepika Padukone who shared a quick video of her washing hands while wearing a mask. Thanking Dr Tedros for nominating her, Deepika wrote, “#COVID19 surely is an uphill health and public safety task, but all of us are in this fight together!”


Paul Kagame, President of the Republic of Rwanda, joined the challenge and shared an elaborative video on the correct way of washing hands and kicking out germs. He said, “Handwashing is one of the most effective ways of preventing the spread of coronavirus.”

Also Read: Kerala Leads The Way In Fighting Novel Coronavirus, Here’s How Other States Can Follow

Badminton player P. V. Sindhu took the challenge to help slow the spread of COVID-19 and further nominated cricketer Virat Kohli, Sania Mirza, and Kiren Rijiju, Minister of State (Independent Charge) Youth Affairs and Sports.

Following P. V. Sindhu, athlete Hima Das took the challenge and posted her video on social media. She said, “Wash your hands properly and regularly wherever you are. Let’s come together and spread awareness.” She too nominated Mr Rijiju, Sania Mirza, actor Akshay Kumar, Tiger Shroff and Sachin Tendulkar.

Mr Rijiju was quick to accept the challenge given by P. V. Sindhu and Hima Das and share his hand washing video.

Also Read: Are Hand Sanitisers Effective In Preventing Coronavirus? All You Need To Know

While requesting all citizens to practice hand hygiene and not touch their face with dirty hands, Dr Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare, Science and Technology, Earth Sciences, shared a video guide on hand washing. He further requested twitterati and Members of Parliament to take up the challenge and post their videos to help create mass awareness.

FIFA President Gianni Infantino joined Dr Tedros in his fight against COVID-19 by ensuring hand hygiene. In his video, Gianni Infantino not only promoted handwashing but also gave the message of saving water. He asked his viewers to not waste water and close the tap while rubbing hands with soap.

Brazilian Footballer Kaka also took the WHO #SafeHands challenge passed on to him by FIFA President Gianni Infantino for protecting the health and beating #COVID19. Sharing a video of him washing his hands with soap Kaka wrote, “We must be ready to support each other in this fight against #coronavirus for our families, our friends, our communities & our world.”

Also Read: As World Fights COVID-19, India’s Efforts Praised With 13 Cases Cured Out Of 110

Footballer Peter Schmeichel showed his support to the WHO by taking the #SafeHands Challenge. He used alcohol-based sanitiser and rubbed it on his hands for 20 seconds to clean his hands. He wrote, “I’m taking on the WHO #SafeHands challenge in solidarity of all those affected by the coronavirus. Hand hygiene is the key to keep ourselves and others protected. Spread the message, not the virus.”

Ivorian retired professional footballer Didier Drogba too joined the fight against viruses by washing his hands after cooking and asked his friends to follow the suit.

Dr Natalia Becker, serving WHO as Goodwill Ambassador for Health Promotion and her husband Alisson Becker, Brazilian Footballer answered Dr Tedros’s call to join the #SafeHands challenge. Alisson Becker replicated the 11 steps of handwashing as taught by Dr Tedros.

Also Read: Coronavirus Outbreak: Government Lays Down Guidelines For Home Quarantine To Contain The Spread Of COVID-19

Reeta Roy President and CEO of Mastercard Foundation too chipped in and further nominated two of her friends and the entire team of Mastercard Foundation. She wrote, “Remember to always clean your taps. Keep washing your hands. Keep safe!”

American performer Billy Porter showed a fun way of washing hands and at the same time ensuring that you rub your hands with soap for at least 20 seconds. He asked his viewers to sing ‘happy birthday’ song twice while rubbing and washing hands. He also asked people to stay indoors to prevent the spread of the COVID-19.

Dr Andrew Fleming, Deputy High Commissioner to Andhra Pradesh and Telangana in Hyderabad, gave his son a lesson on how to wash hands thoroughly and asked all parents to take out time to teach their children how to wash their hands safely.

Sand Artist Sudarsan Pattnaik too joined the bandwagon and took one of the vital precautions (handwashing) to stay safe from COVID-19. He had recently made a sand art as well, asking citizens to take proper precautions and not panic.

Also Read: Are We Dying Soon? Stirred By Their Child’s Panic Query, A Doctor Couple Created A Comic On COVID-19

Twitteratis are also joining the #SafeHands challenge by sharing their video of washing hands and promoting the basic cleanliness measure. Have you joined the challenge?



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