The 15th of October marks Global Handwashing Day and in celebration of this we’re promoting the importance of regular and thorough hand washing.
Despite the fact that we all know we should be doing this, a survey carried out by London-based polling agency, ORB International found that a whopping one in three of us don’t wash our hands properly after using the bathroom.
Interestingly, the international survey found that there are vast differences in attitudes towards hand washing depending on where you are in the world. It was found that those living in China and Japan are significantly less likely to use soap and water after using the bathroom whilst those from Saudi Arabia are the most likely to wash their hands properly.
Within Europe, it has been found that the Greeks are the cleanest with 85% of respondents saying they always wash their hands thoroughly. The Dutch were found to be the least likely with only 50% agreeing with this statement.
The good news is that an impressive 75% of Brits say they wash their hands after visiting the bathroom – although this does mean that one in four of us don’t.
Whether we wash our hands or not, this isn’t something that we give a lot of thought to in our everyday lives. Around the world however 440 million school days are lost every year due to water, sanitation and hygiene related diseases. Highlighting the importance of educating people about good habits, it’s estimated that hand washing with soap alone could save over 650,000 lives a year.
Global Handwashing Day 2016
This international day is dedicated to increasing awareness about the importance of washing with soap as an effective and affordable way of preventing diseases and saving lives.
This year’s theme is ‘Make Handwashing a Habit.’ One of the main reasons why people don’t wash their hands regularly is because they’ve fallen into bad habits. In order for hand washing to be effective however, it must be practiced consistently at key times such as after using the bathroom or before contact with food. The theme emphasises the importance of establishing hand washing as a ritual behaviour in order to achieve long-term sustainability.
How your organisation can promote regular hand washing
Washing our hands regularly is an incredibly simple yet highly effective way of controlling the spread of illnesses such as colds and flu as well as infections that can cause diarrhoea and vomiting. As an employer, it’s natural that you want to look out for the well-being of your employees and do everything you can to reduce staff absences.
Promoting good hygiene practices is just one of the many ways you can do this. Regular hand washing can decrease the bacteria on our hands by up to 80% and therefore helps to reduce cross contamination amongst washroom visitors.
Use of a shared bar of soap can aggravate the problem however because you’re simply transferring germs from person to person. Soap dispensers on the other hand are convenient, much more hygienic and comply with Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations.
Initial’s No Touch Soap Dispensers provide the ultimate level of hygiene because thanks to the intelligent sensor system, it completely eliminates the need for contact. If you would like any further information about washroom solutions, please feel free to browse our website or contact us and we will be more than happy to help.