Tots lessons in hand hygiene

The youngsters watching the hand hygiene cartoon, and learning hand washing techniques.
The youngsters watching the hand hygiene cartoon, and learning hand washing techniques.

Children aged three and four who attend Stornoway Playgroup recent became hand hygiene ‘germ busters’ when they received training in hand hygiene provided by NHS Western Isles.

Infection Control Nurse Janice Mackay has, in the past, delivered training and awareness sessions to children in Stornoway Primary School and well as groups of youngsters in Stornoway Playgroup.

A recent training session for 24 children at Stornoway Playgroup on Keith Street was delivered as in line with the current playgroup project ‘All About Me’. As part of the project, children are currently learning about their hands and hand hygiene; including when to wash their hands, why they need to wash their hands and how to wash their hands.

Janice explained: “During training sessions, the importance of washing your hands correctly is explained in an excellent cartoon film aimed at young children. The film also shows the children how to wash their hands properly and I practice this with the children until they get the hang of it - with the aid of a memorable song which the children all enjoy learning and singing. Children are then given the opportunity to clean their hands using the technique learned, before using a special ‘teddy bear’ shaped ‘wash and glow’ ultraviolet light system so they can see for themselves how well they’ve done!”

She added: “Children retain the important messages of hand hygiene extremely well. I taught one primary four class effective hand washing techniques and when I returned to the same class two years later, each child had remembered what they had learned two years previously.”

The hand hygiene lesson was extremely well received by the children, who were all given ‘germ buster’ stickers for their spotless hands!