Critical Article Review: Handwashing and Disease Prevention In their 2005 article in The Lancet, Luby and colleagues investigated the effects of handwashing promotion on the incidence of acute lower respiratory-tract infections, impetigo, and diarrhea in children. The authors hypothesized that an increase in handwashing in the squatter settlements in Karachi, Pakistan would correlate with a decrease in the above-mentioned diseases. They divided over 900 neighborhoods into one control group and two experimental groups, which were provided either regular or antibacterial soap along with educational programs to promote proper handwashing. From the data collected by fieldworkers and verified by clinicians, the authors were able to draw several...The end:
.....nswer to the research question of whether or not handwashing can prevent acute respiratory disease, diarrhea, and impetigo. It is a useful reference for public-health officials to stress the importance of establishing programs of handwashing promotion in impoverished communities in under-developed nations. It is also an important study for medical professionals working in such communities, as it offers a simple yet important way for these doctors and nurses to prevent diseases and improve the quality of life for their patients. Reference Luby, S.P., Agboatwalla, M., Feikin, D.R., Painter, J., Billhimer, W., Altaf, A., & Hoekstra, R.M. (2005). Effect of handwashing on child health: a randomised controlled trial. The Lancet, 366, 225-233.