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Revista Peruana de Medicina Experimental y Salud Publica

Print version ISSN 1726-4634


CABEZAS, César et al. Effectiveness of glycerinated alcohol use for decontaminating hands in a population without access to safe water post earthquake in Pisco, Peru. Rev. perú. med. exp. salud publica [online]. 2008, vol.25, n.4, pp.391-393. ISSN 1726-4634.

We assessed the effectiveness of the use of glycerinated alcohol for disinfecting the hands of persons fixing foods in communal kitchens in refugee and neighborhood camps with no access to potable water during the first days alter the earthquake that hit Pisco, Peru in August 2007. A previous assessment was performed in 20 adult women with no prior handwashing. Bacterial load in their hands, including mesophilic microorganisms, Enterobacteriaceae, and Staphylococcus aureus was measured before and after the use of glycerinated alcohol. A significant reduction in bacterial load (p<0.001) was found according to the Wilcoxon test. We conclude that the use of glycerinated alcohol is effective for hand disinfection in people manipulating food in an area with no access to potable water alter a natural disaster, in this case, the earthquake that hit Pisco in August 2007.

Keywords : Natural disasters; Handwashing; Water supply; Peru.

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