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In the midst of the COVID-19 outbreak, Bradley Corp. conducted its Healthy Hand Washing Survey to gauge the impact the virus has had on American's hygiene habits.
The survey found the majority of Americans are following the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) hand washing guidelines.
Ninety percent say they are washing their hands more frequently or more thoroughly or longer and 78 percent are washing their hands six or more times a day. That's compared to just 37 percent who washed up that often prior to the outbreak.
In addition, 77 percent are washing their hands for at least 20 seconds or longer, per CDC recommendations. Prior to the coronavirus, the majority of Americans were not washing their hands long enough. Fifty-seven percent estimated they washed for just five to 15 seconds.
It seems as if these healthy actions may continue since 88 percent of Americans believe they are extremely or somewhat likely to maintain their increased hand washing regimen once the virus has passed.
The Healthy Hand Washing Survey was conducted online April 6 –7 with a representative panel of 1,111 American adults and youth. Participants were from around the country, 14 years and older, and were fairly evenly split between men and women (49 percent and 51 percent).
While Americans are taking action, they also are quite worried. Seventy percent say they are extremely or very concerned about contracting the virus. Twelve percent indicate they are not very or not at all concerned.
As expected, germ awareness is running high. Eighty-nine percent of Americans are now more conscious of germs than before the pandemic. In fact, 91 percent say it's extremely or somewhat important that public restrooms have touchless fixtures — presumably so they can avoid contact with potentially germy fixtures and surfaces.
"During these unprecedented times, hand washing and germ avoidance is top of mind for almost everyone," said Jon Dommisse, director of strategy and corporate development for Bradley Corp. "The health benefits of hand washing can't be emphasized enough, particularly during virus outbreaks like this. Hand washing is a simple, effective and inexpensive way to remove germs from our skin and help prevent a possible infection."
Fortunately, Americans are getting the message that hand washing is a front-line defense. Seventy-one percent correctly believe their hands are less germy after washing with soap and water than after using hand sanitizer — a fact supported by the CDC.
Bradley Corp. is a leading manufacturer of commercial hand washing fixtures, washroom accessories, restroom partitions, emergency fixtures and solid plastic lockers. For more information, visit www.bradleycorp.com/handwashing.