School-based Handwashing Promotion - Significantly Reduced Absenteeism
A standard school-based handwashing programme as compared to an expanded version that included soap for school sinks and student handwashing champions/peer hygiene monitors
In control schools, children experienced a median 2.0 episodes (median 2.6 days) of absence per 100 student-weeks. In standard intervention schools, there were a median 1.2 episodes (P=0.08) and 1.9 days (P=0.14) of absence per 100 student-weeks. Children in expanded intervention schools experienced a median 1.2 episodes (P=0.03) and 1.2 days (P=0.03) of absence per 100 student-weeks. This amounts to 42% fewer absence episodes, 54% fewer days of absence, and 71% fewer in-class illnesses in expanded intervention schools; absence incidence & prevalence differed significantly from control.
Country of study
American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene; 2007
Journal paper title and link
A cluster-randomized controlled trial evaluating the effect of a handwashing-promotion program in Chinese primary schools
Excerpt from Abstract
"Provision of a large-scale handwashing promotion program and soap was associated with significantly reduced absenteeism. Similar programs could improve the health of children worldwide."
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