Call to maintain hand washing and social distancing

The Director of Public Health Services, Dr. Len Tarivonda, explained that following the outbreak and the spread of COVID-19 around the world, Vanuatu instituted the practices of hand washing and distancing.

This was to minimize any possible risks of the spread of COVID-19, if the virus happened to enter Vanuatu, which has not yet at this stage. And since there is no case and no suspected case of COVID-19 in Vanuatu, the country has relaxed the movement of people inside the country while maintaining the lockdown on its international borders.

Over the last couple of weeks, and since the country lifted curfews on movements of people, it appeared that many people, particularly in Port Vila, have ignored the hand washing stations for a number of reasons.


“Yes, it has become noticeable that members of the public may be feeling a sense of safety with relaxation of movements, especially that Vanuatu does not have a case of COVID-19, nor any suspected case.

“Or it may be that the members of the public just simply ignore or are being tired of the hand washing practice.

“Whatever is the reason or reasons, I would say that there is no policing or monitoring rule in place for the hand washing practice.


“So there is no fast and hard rules about it, however, it is important just to keep practicing it because it is good hygiene whether for COVID-19 or other diseases and general hygiene reasons,” Dr. Tarivonda explained.

He encouraged families and the general members of the public to continue with hand washing practice both at home and in public places where hand washing stations are set up.

“You will find that once you keep on practice hand washing before entering a shop, office or premises, you’re doing yourself a very good favor of keeping a good hygienic practice and this is very good for your health and the public’s health,” says Dr. Tarivonda.

On social distancing, Mr Tarivonda also encouraged the members of the public to continue practicing social distancing.

He said business houses may still continue with the distancing practice measures and this is ok even if Vanuatu still has no case of COVID-19.

Source: Daily Post

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