An assessment of handwashing promotion in South Asia and India during COVID-19

Inclusive toilet
Image: WaterAid India/Srishti Bhardwaj

Good hand hygiene is one of the most critical behaviours needed to reduce transmission of COVID-19.  During the pandemic response, governments and development partners launched intensive and widespread campaigns using mass, social and digital media to promote handwashing with soap and water. To understand whether communication on hand hygiene during this phase of the pandemic and lockdown was received, understood, and translated into action, WaterAid India conducted a rapid study on hand hygiene in six states. The findings have implications for interventions and policy actions for incorporating hygiene promotion into large-scale health, nutrition, and water, sanitation, hygiene (WASH) programs. 

The South Asia report contains rapid research studies in Bangladesh, India, Nepal and Pakistan during May and June 2020, to assess the effectiveness of handwashing promotion with a focus on marginalised and vulnerable groups.