The World Health Organization has had a recommended method of hand-washing since 2009. It’s an 11-step process that, all done, takes 42.5 sections. It includes a single-use paper towel.
Mind you, the WHO is following in an age-old practice — it was a doctor from Hungary, Ignaz Semmelweis, who was the first to promote the scientific value of hand-washing in the 1800s.
The conclusion followed his frustration at being unable to find a cause for the deaths of women in bed after childbirth.
When one of Semmelweis’ colleagues also died of “childbed fever,” it was clear the illness was not specific to the women who had given birth, but could be passed from one person to another. Semmelweis immediately introduced enforced hand-washing.
Don’t knock it. The Centers for Disease Control describe hand-washing as “do-it-yourself vaccination.” Yet, as all these posters show, dating from across the 20th century, we all need reminding.