Traditional Indian Namaste Is Better Than Handshake
Indian Doctors prefers saying Namaste Than Handshake, doctors to maintain hand hygiene by saying Namaste, Handshake with poor hand hygiene may transmit diseases, physical hand contact may transmit diseases, Indian Doctors prefers saying namaskar Than Handshake, doctors to maintain hand hygiene by saying namaskar, Health, Health Tips, Disease
Now, the traditional Indian ‘Namaste-Namaskar’ seems to be the choice of customary greeting for the city’s top doctors to maintain hand hygiene, after taking a cue from an international study that held western style ‘handshakes’, ‘high-fives’ and ‘fist-bumps’ responsible for transmitting diseases.
It is scientifically proven that poor hand hygiene may transmit diseases. Germs responsible for diarrhoea, typhoid, common cold, upper respiratory tract infection and gastro problems could be transmitted by doctors to healthy people after coming in physical hand contact with patients affected with them.
Not long ago, hand-washing even fuelled the imagination of a popular soap advertisement with children as the target audience, explaining how it can check the spread of acute diarrhoeal disease and typhoid-causing germs like clostridium difficile and salmonella typhi.
“There is no alternate to Indian namaste when it comes to hand hygiene. Though isopropyl alcohol-based hand sanitizers can kill 99% of disease causing germs but they are ineffective against germs like cryptosporidium, norovirus and clostridium difficile (causing diarrohea),” explained dermatologist Dr Anup Lahiry of Apollo Hospitals at Secunderabad. The remaining 1% germs can be killed by soap-based sanitizers, Lahiry said.
Sample this: The Union health ministry reports that in 2013 alone, there were 1,535 diarroheal deaths and 361 typhoid deaths. The two germs were responsible for reporting more than one crore diarrohea cases and 15.37 lakh typhoid cases with possible transmission modes including contaminated food, water or poor hand hygiene.
The internal report, appearing in the August 2014 issue of the American Journal of Infection Control (AJIC) claimed handshake transmitted twice as many bacteria than high-fives and 10-times more bacteria than fist-bumping.
Thankfully, tech-savvy Indian doctors got the hint. “The first thing in our next hospital infection control committee, we are going to discuss the ‘namaste’ aspect of hand hygiene and see how it can be practiced in the hospital,” said Dr Shiva Raju of KIMS Hospital.
Dr Vyakaranam Nageshwar, CEO of Colorado-registered Allergy & Asthma Network of India (AANI), who suggested his group members for widespread use of ‘namaste’ for greeting patients in hospital premises, opined: “it is better to come out with posters on the topic in hospitals so that it does not lead to any awkwardness”.
However, the likes of Dr Suneetha Narreddy, infectious diseases consultant at Apollo Hospitals, says the idea of ‘Namaste is better than handshake’ was a concept that they had popularised during the H1N1 influenza outbreak. “What is more important is to practice the concept of hand hygiene using sanitizers,” Narreddy said…More info