The Hand Hygiene for All initiative is necessary to move the world towards supporting the most vulnerable communities with the means to protect their health and environment. The initiative will help WHO implement global hand hygiene to prevent and control the COVID-19 pandemic and ensure lasting infrastructure and behaviour. It will create innovative solutions to fit different contexts to make soap, alcohol-based hand rubs and hygiene supplies available and affordable.
Access to hand hygiene in healthcare facilities, schools, public places, and homes is essential to protect global health and reduce the risk of future outbreaks. In all settings, scaling up hand hygiene could prevent an estimated 165000 deaths from diarrhoeal diseases each year. Scientific evidence has also shown that improving health hygiene strategies in health care can reduce healthcare-associated infections.