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‘Greet with NAMASTE, bye-bye handshake’: a behavioural change campaign for infection prevention in the Emergency Department from Jodhpur, India
  1. Satyendra Khichar,
  2. Maya Gopalakrishnan,
  3. Gopal Krishana Bohra,
  4. Mahendra Kumar Garg,
  5. Sanjeev Misra
  1. All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India
  1. Correspondence to Professor Mahendra Kumar Garg, Department of Medicine, All India Institute of Medical Sciences Jodphur, Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India; mkgargs{at}

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To the Editor,

Cross-infection by healthcare workers (HCWs) with contaminated hands is a major source of spread of infection. Transmission or prevention, it all remains in the hands. In this COVID-19 pandemic, greeting with a handshake is no longer acceptable socially or medically. In February 2020, we initiated the ‘NAMASTE CAMPAIGN’. ‘NAMASTE’—greeting with folded hands, an ancient Indian cultural practice means ‘The divine in me bows to the divine in you’. It spreads positivity but not infection, which is essential for mental fitness of emotionally strained HCWs in the pandemic.1 Our centre is an 800 bedded tertiary care hospital in Rajasthan, India, catering to a population of 12 million. Daily …

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  • Handling editor Ellen J Weber

  • Contributors SM and MKG designed the campaign. GKB, MG and SK were responsible for implementation of infection control and hand hygiene at the COVID-19 screening zones and ED. MG and SK were responsible for reinforcement visits and feedback collection after the campaign. The manuscript draft was written by SK and MG. It was reviewed critically for content and edited by GKB, MKG and SM. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient and public involvement Patients and/or the public were involved in the design, conduct, reporting or dissemination plans of this research. Refer to the Methods section for further details.

  • Patient consent for publication Obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.