The Effect of a Comprehensive Handwashing Program on Absenteeism in Elementary Schools

Hand hygiene education is significant

Two hundred ninety students from five independent schools were enrolled in the study.  Each test classroom had a control classroom, and only the test classroom received the intervention (education program and hand sanitizer).  Absenteeism data was collected for 3 months.  The number of absences was 50.6% lower in the test group.  The conclusion of the study strongly suggests that a hand hygiene program that combines education and use of a hand sanitizer in the classroom can lower absenteeism and be cost-effective.  The study was published in the American Journal of Infection Control.