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Heartfelt Thoughts and Practical Advice 

2024: Our Father vs. the Tripledemic

Updated: Jan 16

The Hand Hygiene practices that came to the forefront during the pandemic are no less critical in 2024 with us facing another year of the tridemic or the tripledemic - the combination of COVID-19, RSV and the Flu.

According to the CDC and other health organizations the target duration for hand washing is at least 20 seconds. That's about the time it takes to sing the Alphabet Song. Another common timing suggestion is to sing the Happy Birthday song twice. Either song may be useful as a timing mechanism, but assuming at this stage in life you’ve nailed the whole A-B-C thing, and that you don’t have a big birthday solo coming up, humming either tune serves little other purpose.

Now, as a Christian and notorious multi-tasker, it recently occurred to me this effort could be put to much better use. Instead of singing the Alphabet Song once or Happy Birthday twice, consider the double duty of saying the Our Father twice. Each takes about 14 seconds which puts you just north of the optimal hand washing time, while adding a “soul hygiene” component to the effort and help clean more than just your hands.


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